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Boxing or MMA: Which is the legitimate fighting sport?
Sat, February 14, 2009

What’s the most heated debate in Canadian sports today? No, not fighting in hockey or whether the NFL is more entertaining than the CFL. It’s MMA vs. boxing. Sun Media writers Jose Rodriguez and Murray Greig trade verbal punches and kicks — and maybe some ground and pound — as they argue which sport deserves the championship belt.

Jose Rodriguez has been covering mixed-martial arts for Sun Media since before it was fashionable. He has sat cageside for everything from UFC events to smokers. He was the first major print journalist in Canada to write about MMA and one of the first in North America. He currently writes a weekly column and is the chief contributor to The Scrapyard blog.

Starting with Ali-Spinks II, Murray Greig has covered Canadian and international boxing for the past 30 years and has attended 55 national, British Commonwealth and world title bouts. He trained former Canadian light heavyweight champ Danny Stonewalker for a world title challenge against Michael Moorer in 1990, and in 1996 authored the best-selling book, Goin’ the Distance: Canada’s boxing heritage.


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Way to go, Murray. You're the first writer to really explain the mindset of the boobs who are attracted to MMA. Rodrigues is way out of his league on this one, as his arguments are all emotional crap compared to Greig's. I'm won't be surprised if most of the answers here are anti-boxin, however, because all the MMA crowd can do is react emotionally, like Rodrigues. The fact that DeLa Hoya and Mayweather each made $60 million from ONE fight last year and that fight BEAT every MMA ppv purchase is a good sign of what Murray is saying. MMA is a pathetic sideshow for pathetic people. Thanks, Murray.
Paulie G., 2009-02-14 18:46:11

Murray Greig is a perfect example of why boxing is on it's death bed .. I do enjoy boxing .. maybe a couple of times a year .. and i look at the golden age of boxing and see so many great fighters .. but

MMA has risen from the dead .. if mr creig was smart .. he would know mma started in ancient greece and was one of the original events at the olympics ( called Pankration at the time) .. it was much like todays sport .. even back then they preferred to stand but ground fighting was legal .. if mr creig wants to see some good ground fighting he should look at Pride FC .. some of the greatest moments of action were when two amazing grapplers traded subnmission attempts and were able to reverse mount positions .. boxing is a one dimensional sport .. mma is a true test of skill .. endurance .. strength and toughness .. and will continue to flourish in countries like Canada, USA, Brazil, Japan, Holland, England, Ireland, Russia, and many other countries ...
Adam Thompson, 2009-02-14 15:59:47

In todays world MMA is what the fans want do doubt about it there ,just go into any local bar or pub and the gossip is MMA ,GSP and Anderson Silva for sure not Mike Tyson like it was 10 + years ago Boxing has the history no doubt about that and there will never be another sports figure like Muhammad Ali never mind fighter His fighting ability and his political life and charisma are never going to be duplicated !!!. I beleive if he was fighting today he'd be the first billion dollar athlete, just imagine the endorsments . I am sure all MMA fighters would acknowledge that. MMA is no doubt a better form of self defense, and as a real boxing fan for several years, I do like how 99 % of the UFC fighters conduct themselves with class, it helps with the acceptance of the sport Dana White has done a good job there . I disagree with the pounding on somebody after they've been Knocked down, that usually means that they are knocked out for a brief second and deserve to be protected not pounded on seveal times with their heads against the mat. Bottom line is that most people come and see the sport for the knockouts most fans don't like to see grappling, nobody would like to see Chuck Liddel lay on the ground all night and try to attempt submissions, just go to a Judo or Free Style wrestling tournament to see what kind of fan base they have ,not a huge turn-out !Don't get me wrong a more effective form of self defense sport than boxing still but still boring . Also most fans don't want to watch Lennox Lewis or Virgil Hill 's effective and boring style all night long, they want the Knock-outs, like Mike Tyson and Brawls like Mickey Ward and Arturo Gatti. Fans want to see Rocky Balboa vs Apollo Creed style fights. If boxing wants to compete with MMA I think they should modify a few rules go with the small gloves and change the rounds similar to a system of the UFC. There would be less long term damage suffered to the boxers from the long 12 round beatings they take over the years and more quick knockouts if they were to go with the UFC gloves, who cares about the pokes in the eye, that happends to the boxers too. I just wonder who is getting all the money if the Pay per Views are so much bigger than the Tyson era where he made 25 million a fight, why aren't the fighters getting paid like they deserve, after all the fans go to see the fighters , not Dana White put on their belts after they win and tell them here's your $70.000 G's for knockout of the night G thanks have fun with the 50 million you fought so hard for Don King spread the money around alot more.
Clayton ROE, 2009-02-14 14:35:20

Thanks to Murray for yet again proving how uninformed and blind the boxing dinosaurs really are. Last I checked Brazil is in South America, home of Brazilian Ju-Jutzu, the basis for MMA ground fighting. They may not know who Randy is, but they all know who the Gracies are. MMA is huge in Russia, Japan had one of the biggest MMA leagues in the world (pride) until the UFC bought them, and many European countries have MMA events regularly. This is a world wide sport weather he likes it or not.

And to say that MMA will never have a global audience is ludicrous. Notice how all the "huge, global" fights he listed are ancient? The last big boxing match (De La Hoya vs Mayweather) bombed so bad no one seemed to care about it 2 days later, yet the chat rooms are still full of people talking about GSP vs BJ, Chuck / Randy, etc. etc. The future will hold many major events that will captivate massive audiences, the writing is on the wall.

To say that boxing takes more brains than MMA is just plain ignorant. If he know anything about MMA he would know that the best fighters are very intelligent, with dozens of submission holds, each with a very different reversal, the amount of knowledge any fighter must have would baffle the average boxer. And that's just one part of the game.

And I have never met, seen, or even herd of a punch drunk MMA fighter.

I may be 30, but I don't play many video games,and I don't watch WWE, never have, yet I'm a huge MMA fan, formerly a boxing fan. Welcome to the 21st century, boxing had it's time.
James, 2009-02-14 13:25:17

I can't believe the the nonsense that obviously spews freely from the mouth of Murray Greig. Murray, your arguments are ignorant at best. Had you thought to put a little effort in to researching MMA you may have come off a touch more intelligent. If this is a "fight" debate you must allow for the comparison to be made between boxer and MMA fighter as it pertains to fighting period. Having said this, it is not the only argument of yours that is absurd. How wide spread was the popularity of boxing less then a decade in to the sport? Modern day MMA did not make it's debut until after Zuffa took over the UFC. Dana White and Zuffa have made this sport what it is today and what a sport it is! Your biggest mistake was to say that "a marginally talented club fighter would knock any MMA champion cold in a boxing match." I challenge you to find a "marginally talented club fighter" who could box with A.Silva / GSP / BJ PENN / RASHAD EVANS and the list goes on ... You need to take a nap Grandpa and I am sure you will continue to dream the impossible - MMA has already surpassed boxing as the greatest combat sport ever and it is in it's infancy.
Mark Simpson, 2009-02-14 12:45:48

After reading the article that Murray Greig was out done clearly!!! he could not make any legitament arguements againts the UFC. It was obvious he has not paid any attention to the UFC as he was made out to look like a fool when stating that UFC was not a worldwide sport, when clearly it has expanded world wide as Jose stated. Especailly just coming from South East Asia for the past 6 months I do know that the UFC is popular and people do know who Liddel and GSP are and really they probably have no idea who Pacquiao is.

I enjoyed this artricle as it made it even more evident that MMA is a more exciting sport to watch then boxing!
Tyson Sinclair, 2009-02-14 12:20:49

This "debate" is as one-sided as most of Tyson's fights. Mr. Greig lands the big bombs early, and Mr. Rodriguez has no answer for them. I tried watching MMA live twice, and both times I left early out of boredom. There was no style and strategy like boxing. As a 30 year old I'm probably on the outside of the average age of MMA fans, but, as Mr. Greig says, MMA is just a sideshow to the real sport of boxing.
Paul Tremblay, 2009-02-14 11:31:20

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