Is the grass really greener on the other side?
In my personal experiences, it usually isn’t, but nevertheless, as the sky is blue and the sun is hot, people will always look for greener pastures.
How that relates to MMA you might ask. Well, in the past year, we’ve seen an increasing number of mixed martial arts proclaim their desires to crossover to the more socially acceptable combat sport of boxing. Anderson Silva, Andrei Arlovski, and KJ Noons have all either expressed their interest, trained for it, or even done it.
Well, the latest fighter to do it isn’t actually talking about it, he’s just gone ahead and signed on the dotted line to box a former heavyweight champ. If you remember, Tim Sylvia was in talks to fight Ray Mercer in Adrenaline III’s main event. As ridiculous at it was, it’s arguably gone from bad to worse now that Monte Cox has decided to make it a boxing match instead of a mixed martial arts fight.
“I was doing Tim Sylvia against Ray Mercer as a headliner,” Cox said. “First I was doing it in MMA. We changed and thought it would be a lot more interesting in boxing.”
“You just have no idea who is going to win,” Cox said. “I don’t care if he’s 47 (years old). He’s been boxing his whole life, won an Olympic gold medal, went to split decision with Lennox Lewis. Believe me, he’s going to hit hard. Tim’s going to have a hard time.”
Maybe Cox is right. Maybe the outcome is a little harder to predict now that Tim has to play Mercer’s game. However, that doesn’t make it any less retarded, especially for Tim’s career. HDNet must have thought so too, because the channel that literally broadcasts every MMA event they can get their hands on actually passed on this event.
I suppose the good news is Sylvia’s boxing career looks to be very short-lived. Depending on when Affliction books their third event, there’s a chance Tim will be participating, possibly against Paul Buentello.
Sylvia isn’t the only combat sports veteran poised to take a leap over to the other side though. Former heavyweight boxing champ, Hasim Rahman, apparently has decided he wants to try out mixed martial arts. The best part, however, is why.
“He thought it would be an interesting thing. He’s seen Kimbo Slice fight on TV, and he’s like, ‘I’d like to fight some of these guys,’” said Gelke.
Rahman, who has zero grappling background, last scored a takedown while scuffling with Lewis on the ESPN set while promoting their November 2001 rematch. Gelke said that his client plans to keep his boxing career going as well, but has yet to locate an MMA-based gym. But they’re looking around, he added.
“He hasn’t wrestled. He was actually quite a streetfighter (in Baltimore) so people said he should box,” Gelke said of Rahman, who took up boxing at the relatively late age of 20. “He’s like Quinton (Jackson) and Kimbo in that sense. We’re talking to quite a few different organizations, from small promotions up to the big ones. We’re looking to fight name fighters like Kimbo, Butterbean [Eric Esch], James Thompson, someone to bring a name to the table.”
He’s seen Kimbo on TV and decided he wants to get into MMA. Hmmm…so basically, either Rahman has no idea what he’s getting himself into or he wants to fight a few freak show matches and make a quick buck.
I’m going with the former, and here’s why. In an interview with DreamFighters.com, he was asked what he thought about Fedor. His reply:
He’s a champ. I am a champ. Let’s fight.
Well, that fight would be a big fat waste of everyone’s time, but hey, if Tim Sylvia isn’t ready in time for Affliction III, at least he knows where to find his next opponent. I’m sure Monte wouldn’t have a problem setting it up.