The man they call FoM
Posted On:3/03/2003 12:01am
Thought you mind find this interesting.
Was having a look on FrankShamrock.org and he has a link to this recent article. His UFC comments are interesting.
Article is written by Ken Pishna from MMA Weekly:
Doing His Part: The Return of Frank Juarez Shamrock
By Ken Pishna, MMA Weekly
Posted:Febrnuary 17, 2003
It’s been nearly three and a half years since Frank Shamrock laid the smack down on current UFC Light Heavyweight Champion Tito Ortiz and wondered off into the unknown. Seemingly every day, he was rumored to be making a comeback. Seemingly every day, nothing came to fruition, save for one bout in Japan against Australian Elvis Sinosic. So why now? Why would Shamrock, five time UFC middleweight champion, return now? “Because I hate going to Kansas City and talking to the cashier at Denny’s and they’re like, ‘Oh, yeah, the Ultimate Fighting champion, isn’t that the thing in the cage with no rules?’ That’s what the people remember. They don’t see anything else. They just see fighting.”
Frank Shamrock will return to the ring on March 27th at The Palace in Lemoore, California to fight for World Extreme Cagefighting. Only a month out from the event, an opponent has yet to be named. Frank doesn’t care. That’s not why he’s returned to the sport that he loves. “I’ve fought everybody. What am I gonna do? How many more belts can I win?” Frank explains, “My whole thing is, I’ve always wanted this sport to be the biggest sport in the world. And I’ve always thought that it could be. And right now, I think that the leaders of this sport have gotten a little distracted. I want to get in there and do my part.”
In Frank’s eyes, “Everybody should be working together for this sport. Pride, UFC, KOTC, everybody should be having a super show once a year. All these shows should be combining their efforts, instead they’re hoarding their pennies, screwing the fighters,” he continues, “They’re putting a downer on the sport. They should be sticking a hand out, lifting it up.”
Many changes have occurred since Frank last graced the Octagon. Nevada and New Jersey, among other states, have sanctioned mixed martial arts. The UFC has regained access to cable pay-per-view. Mixed martial arts bouts have been broadcast on major sports networks. But according to Frank, the promoters still aren’t going that extra mile like they should be. “I get so frustrated. I was at the Nevada commission when they approved [mixed martial arts]. They looked at me and they said, ‘Who’s going to catalogue these fighters and keep track of them.’ And everybody else was looking around at the walls and the ceiling. All [the promoters] want to do is put on shows and make money. There’s no one out there protecting [the fighters] and there’s no one out there that knows what these guys goes through.”
That is a big part of why Frank has returned, for the sake of the other fighters. His belief is that mixed martial arts should not be built solely on what goes on in the ring. He believes that the stories of the fighters’ lives needs to be told in order to draw mainstream acceptance. “In my opinion, there’s something very serious, very special about a guy who’s willing to climb into a cage and fight for money, honor, respect. There’s something that draws people towards that. I mean, I know guys that live in a van so that they don’t have to pay rent so that they can train all the time. I know guys that live under the ring. And they crawl out in the morning and teach class and train all day because their dream is to be a professional martial artist. I think that those stories need to be told,” says Frank.
“That’s what real people think is pretty amazing. Real people don’t think that fighting in a cage is pretty amazing. They think we’re all nuts!” he continues, “A guy that makes those sacrifices and shows that dedication, that’s what the American spirit is about. That’s the example of the human spirit that I think needs to be shown.” That’s not what we’re seeing now. When you tune in to a pay-per-view broadcast, what do you see? According to Frank, “We see a guy hitting the bag. How tough he is, his tattoos, his smack talk. But you don’t see any humanness to them. And I don’t think that the general public and the masses are going to get behind [MMA] until they realize that these guys are human beings.”
Even though he’s been away from participating in the fights, Frank has never left the sport. In fact, he’s been working just as hard since his last fight as he had been when he was still in the ring. Frank has been attempting to organize a league and union for fighters to try and bring them the recognition that they deserve and to build up the industry. “That’s something that I’ve been working on for about a year now. This is coming along very slowly,” the frustration apparent in his voice, “I’m getting no help or participation from any large entity at all. All this stuff I have done on my own dollar and everyone has volunteered their own time. So that’s a complete uphill battle. There’s lots of work to be done. Everybody who has volunteered their time and efforts have all been fans of the sport just wanting to see it go to the next level.”
So what will it take? What’s finally going to push mixed martial arts over the edge into the mainstream? Frank has an answer, “ We just need one superstar.” And Frank may just be that superstar, but don’t look for him to be that superstar in the UFC. He proclaimed, “I will never do business with the UFC again and I will never fight in the UFC again. Unless I buy the UFC, it’s not going to happen. They’re trying to build the sport their way and I have to respect that. I don’t think its the right way. I don’t agree with it and I don’t have to participate with them. I’m going to do it my way. I’m going to do it for myself and for the fans and to help the fighters.”
He continues, “I think the key is turning these guys into stars and making them someone that people can associate with. People don’t care about fighting, they don’t give a **** about the UFC. My grandma watches Oscar DeLaHoya because he’s Oscar DeLaHoya. That’s the only boxing show that she ever watches.” That’s what Frank believes will put mixed martial arts on the map, “We just need one superstar, one DeLahoya.”
Or maybe we just need one Frank Juarez Shamrock.
“Support the Sport!”
By Ken Pishna,
Make friends with them until they beg for mercy.
The Wastrel - So attractive he HAS to be a woman.
The Man with No Neck
Posted On:3/03/2003 12:39am
Style: submission wrestling
The sad truth is, the people who are involved in running the UFC, KOTC and other MMA productions are not fighters. They may talk tough, look tough and have some tough tattoos. But they've never been in the cage and it shows. The announcers are either so hyper you can't understand them or completely uneducated on fighting. The advertisements are pure WWE, the pay-per-view shows are amatuerish and even the fighter interviews are painful to watch. Here's what the UFC and other shows need:
1) Honest, competent people to run day-to-day operations, as well as the big fight nights. The venues nickle and dime the fighters and wonder why no one stays around very long. If a guy is willing to train hard and fight NHB, pay him what you promise and build some trust. It's not that hard.
2) Educate people on the sport. I have yet to see a spot on pay-per-view that actually explains the rules and techniques involved in MMA. It's better than trying to hype an event that is 3 months away and doesn't even have a card yet. Show people an armbar or striking from the mount and explain them in direct, easy to understand terms.
3) Advertise! Last friday, same day as the UFC, I picked up a copy of USA Today. On the very last page of the sports section, in the TV listings, they had a tiny one-line blurb about UFC 42 under the heading 'Mixed Martial Arts'. I was looking for it and almost didn't find it. Pathetic. You have to court the mainstream sports media. You have to spend the time and money to get people's attention. They almost had something going with Fox Sports but nothing materialized. I watched Tank go on the Best Damn Sports Show Period and had to change the channel, I was so embarassed. Exposure is life to a pro sport, so put your best foot forward, fer chrissake!
"Go cry about it Vargas. Aren't you late for your shift at McDonald's?"
"I had once talked to Billy Conn, the boxer, about professionals versus amateurs - specifically street fighters. One had always heard rumors of champions being taken out by back-alley fighters. Conn was scornful. "Aw, it's like hitting a girl," he said. "They're nothing."
- George Plimpton
Posted On:3/03/2003 12:47am
Make friends with them until they beg for mercy.
Posted On:3/03/2003 1:13am
Style: Judo and BJJ
Thier were several UFC commercials for this last one.
And that's when I figured out that tears couldn't make somebody who was dead alive again. There's another thing to learn about tears, they can't make somebody who doesn't love you any more love you again. It's the same with prayers. I wonder how much of their lives people waste crying and praying to God. If you ask me, the devil makes more sense than God does. I can at least see why people would want him around. It's good to have somebody to blame for the bad stuff they do. Maybe God's there because people get scared of all the bad stuff they do. They figure that God and the Devil are always playing this game of tug-of-war game with them. And they never know which side they're gonna wind up on. I guess that tug-of-war idea explains how sometimes, even when people try to do something good, it still turns out bad.
Posted On:3/03/2003 3:13am
Cool article, thanks for posting it.
I look forward to Frank returning, it's too bad because most of his dominance occured when the UFC was banned from PPV so he's not nearly as well known as he should be.
The problem is, he's had a big pissing match with the new UFC ownership and will never fight for them, and I guess he's tried to break into Pride but they have tons of middle weight talent and have repeatedly blown him off, so he's going to end up fighting in a bunch of second rate venues.
Too bad, the guy is a superb athlete and a good guy, he would be a great ambassador for the sport as it is trying to break into the mainstream but I don't see it happening.
Posted On:3/03/2003 1:35pm
"The announcers are either so hyper you can't understand them or completely uneducated on fighting. The advertisements are pure WWE, the pay-per-view shows are amatuerish and even the fighter interviews are painful to watch."
the announcers are a big part of educating the "populace"
a better "fighter" profile would be good, show one guy enjoying gradening and his kids lol
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Posted On:3/03/2003 6:33pm
Yeah, it'd be a crime if the guy never fought for a major promotion again.
Make friends with them until they beg for mercy.
Posted On:3/04/2003 12:29am
I like Frank Shamrock. He's a good guy. Also, hey Joe Rogan didn't suck too bad on the mic at UFC 40.
&gt;&gt; Perhaps it was because I had an inherent skill for the science and never deviated from natural principles. - Miyamoto Musashi 1643
Posted On:3/07/2003 2:46pm
Style: Tai Chi & TKD
There are promoters out there that have fighting experience. Brian Dunn, who has fought the likes of Gilbert Yvel and Shannon Ritch, puts on his own shows in the Omaha area. Monte Cox, founder of Extreme Challenge, was a pro boxer. Frank Shamrock used to host his own event called Bushido. UFC vet Tedd Williams hosts the Gladiator Challenge events. Bas Rutten used to have his own MMA event.
Monte Cox told me - after I fought for him in EC 25 - that people with experience fighting tend to make the best promoters because they know how other fighters want to be treated.
"Strike first! Strike hard! No mercy, sir!"
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