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5 rounds fights put athletes at risk while making fights less enjoyable for fans.

5 rounds fights put athletes at risk while making fights less enjoyable for fans.

And speaking of five rounds, what in the hell
are we still doing that for? That is one strange thing and I had made a
comment about this a while ago, and I think it was [00:00:11] but somebody had posted
it for the kids on the underground and there was a little bit of a back and forth and there
was a lot of pushback. My general argument was “Hey, we have to
do away with the five-round fights.” When a commission comes forward—and what
does a commission want? They want the revenue. But what does a commission say that they want? They say that, “Our number one job is fight
safety.” When you look at the safety of the fighters
by leaving them in there for 25 minutes in five full rounds, it’s pretty tough to make
that argument. It makes it pretty tough to make that claim. And you could look at it from any level that
you want and when I saw some of the kids weighing in on the underground, they were taking the
stance of, “Oh my gosh, I love watching five-round fights. Those championship rounds add another element
and those championship rounds are so fun, and looking back at some of the memories of
some of the great fights I have I’d be so disappointed if those weren’t five rounds. You’re coming at it from a selfish standpoint
of what you like to watch from your living room on TV. I’m coming at you from a little bit more sophisticated
standpoint of telling you it is not safe for the fighters to be out there that long. I then offer you as evidence, okay, two weeks
ago as evidence I offered you simply the last five-round fight that we had seen, which was
Robert Whittaker versus Yoel Romero. Neither fighter has fought since because they
were injured in that fight, not hurt. There’s a big difference in hurt and injured. They were both injured in that fight. So I didn’t go back any further in my historical
data to form this premise and hypothesis than the last time we saw it. Pretty hard to argue against, yet some kids
on the underground still did. So now I sit before you today and I think
we can all agree that Yair and the Zombie was five rounds. I’m well aware that it ended with exactly
one second left, but let’s just concede that that was a five-round fight and let’s see,
and only time will tell, but I will predict now that we don’t see either of them back
for a meaningful period of time. And I think that it’s a very cold and callous
argument for somebody to say, “Yes, but I was entertained and I had fun watching that,”
when guys’ careers are now put on hold and they’re jeopardized and they don’t get to
come back and they don’t get to come back in a timely fashion. And I’m not a crusader on this point, so this
isn’t you against me, and it’s not my point and I don’t want, you know, my popularity
to—so then people come in and go, “Yeah, let’s do away with it,” or people go, “You
know, I don’t like Chael, so I don’t like his argument.” Just saying this: Let’s just have a fair debate
on it. It does seem a little bit bizarre that in
this sport, if it’s a championship fight, the time would change. That in and of itself this weird. In no sport on no level, and that’s a huge
statement, from the time you’re in little league and I’m also—so any level, through
junior high, through high school, through college, off onto the pros, and in any sport,
in any organization, the NFL, the NHL, NBA, NCAA, division 1, division 2, division 3,
high schools, junior colleges, Olympic Games, world championships, any organization, any
sport, you don’t change the parameters once it’s for the gold medal. It simply doesn’t work that way. In the NBA playoffs, they don’t go out there
and play five quarters. The Super Bowl is not five quarters. The World Cup is not three halves. That’s not the way that it works. So how this ever started in our sport in the
first place that, okay, now you’ve got to do your sport and you’ve got to prove your
point, but you got to prove it for 80% more time or it doesn’t count, I think that you
first have to tackle that just on a logical narrative. But then I do think there is something to
be looked at that when you’re putting two trained killers in there that are beating
people up under extremely limited rules, why are they having to do it for so long when
we’re confronted with the evidence that should you meet that duration guys are leaving injured? Significant difference. Go out and try to do damage. We’re in the hurt business, we’re in the injury
business, and I don’t like that narrative, and I just think that it’s something that
needs to be looked at. And people that stand back and are entertained
by that or they want to see guys out there for an hour, yeah, this is silly. That’s not what you want. You don’t really want that. Even the fans really don’t want to see that. It has been the death to boxing. My argument would be, one—and I’m largely
making this statement for you guys but that I’m seeing the debate on the underground,
so the kids on the underground will take this in multiple different directions if I give
them the opportunity to. I don’t want to do that. I want to limit the scope to your argument
of simply being fighter safety, and if you have a counter to the fact that the last time
we’ve seen a five-round contest, which was Yoel versus Whittaker and neither of them
has been in the ring since because they were injured, I would love to hear how you think
that that doesn’t deserve review. And now that we’ve seen the Zombie and Yair,
it appears to me that this is something, and only time will tell, but I have a prediction
that neither of them is going to be in there anytime soon, and I just would offer to you
that perhaps this warrants review. That’s all I want to make the scope of the
argument on. I will extend it for conversational purposes
but not for ammunition for anybody to fire back on that it’s also not very much for a
fan, and while you could point to a few fights that were really fun to watch for that long—I
could, too, certainly there were—if you look at the sport of boxing, this has been
the death of boxing. Boxing has not even figured this out yet. The death of boxing is the boringness of the
sport. No other sport has to be promoted. Every other sport you can just put it on TV. That’s it. The power of television will sell the tickets,
build the enthusiasm and fill up an arena. You can fill up the beer cups and you can
pop the popcorn. In boxing, it has to be promoted with B-roll
and trailers and press conferences because the sport is so damn boring. I say this to you as a boxer. I box every single day. I wrestle as well, and I’m well aware of the
problems we have bringing in crowds in wrestling. People can find it boring. So this isn’t coming to you from somebody
that doesn’t enjoy the sport. I do enjoy it. I just also realize some of the downfalls
that it has. And boxing, who has always been top-heavy
with just a main event, only a featured fight—right? We’re seeing a boxing promoter in Oscar De
La Hoya get in the MMA business and he’s following that model. He’s got one fight on top of the bill and
nothing else to watch all night long. It’s a different deal in MMA. It’s shorter matches. It’s much more exciting with much more to
look forward to. In boxing where they’re top-heavy, they run
into the problem of, “What do I do when I fill up an arena and people took the night
off and people pay the premium for tickets, what do I do if there’s nothing for them to
watch? So I need to schedule a 12-round contest. I can focus it top-heavy, but people can then
justify parting with their money and their time to come in and watch something that may
or may not go the better part of an hour with introductions and walkouts.” If boxing would shorten its time to something
more reasonable, something that people want to see, load cards up with multiple things
to watch, they would much greater serve their industry. There are one to two big boxing fights a year
because there are only a couple of boxing stars, and the reason that nobody’s a star
is unless you can make it to the main event you can’t get any level of promotion. Now, that is for the business and for them
to figure out on their own, but one of the driving forces that have created this entire
domino effect that has prevented boxing from building stars and from giving you an entire
night to look forward to and just one match is the duration of the rounds. If the main event did not have the opportunity
to be 36 minutes of competition, 48 minutes with breaks, and an hour with walkouts and
announcements, if it didn’t have that opportunity, it would force the industry and force the
promoters to offer you something else special to watch – a co-main event, an undercard. It would elevate and promote all of the guys
in the back, not just the two that made it to the last fight of the evening. That’s a discussion and something that should
be considered, but it needs to be looked at as well. It needs to be looked at the same as MMA. We do not need to make this long and drawn
out and boring from a viewer perspective. And I always love when somebody will come
out and argue with me and go, “But I like it.” What kind of objectivity do you have? I can prove to you through evidence without
opinion—opinions lie and so do people, but numbers don’t—I can prove to you through
the numbers that are sitting in the live arena that do not come until the main event walks
out that people as a whole don’t like it. But I’ll always have that kid on the Internet
that weighs in on the underground and tells you his opinion – your opinion versus the
facts of the numbers. That separates a critical thinker, somebody
who’s fair and objective and looking to move things forward, from the rest. Boxing would be better served and always would
have been better served to be shorter. From the beginning of time, boxing announcers
have had to cover the boringness that is a boxing fight by telling you they are feeling
each other out, of which there is no such thing. There is no such thing as a feeling-out process. There has never been a coach or a trainer
in the history of the world that has got into a boxing gym and explained to his athlete
how to feel the opponent out. There is no such thing. There are two fighters that are well aware
that they have signed a ridiculous contract to do a ridiculous thing. They have an unspoken agreement to burn up
a number of rounds before they go and get into it. In MMA, we don’t see that. We see two guys going after it, two guys that
are incentivized to stop the fight, two guys that are incentivized to make sure they get
the win, two guys that are incentivized to be entertaining. Those athletes are living up to their expectations. They’re absolutely delivering for the fans,
so now it is incumbent that the fans offer something back, which is, guys, we’re not
going to leave you in there for the better part of a half hour. There is no point. We do not need you in the gyms training at
that level all of the time. Three rounds, five minutes in duration, 80%
more than a boxing round, which is hard, really hard, is enough. I just think that it’s something that needs
to be reviewed, and I will make the prediction for you now between Zombie and Yair, who deserve
a ton of credit and certainly get it from me and put on a fantastic performance, I would
just offer to you as a prediction that we’re not going to see either of them for a meaningful
period of time, and hopefully it won’t be as long of sits and rests as Yoel Romero and
Robert Whittaker had to do. But even if it comes remotely close, I think
that’s too long for two guys that simply went out there and did their jobs.

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19 thoughts on “5 rounds fights put athletes at risk while making fights less enjoyable for fans.

  1. I know I'm a little late to the party here, BUT why not switch to 4 minute rounds? In my estimation it would encourage fighters to work a bit faster. Not only that but it would take five minutes off the total time of the fight, from 25 to 20, which would at least reduce injury in championship rounds. And I saw someone suggest pride time standards would also fix judging. The judging in MMA needs a complete overhaul, and needs to be treated as a completely different issue.

  2. I feel like I disagree but chael has a point. From my perspective, 5 round fights favour the fighter that has a better gas tank. With 3 round fights all you have to go off is skill, personally that's what I like to see, who has the better skills and not who can last longer. This being said the true way to test who hs the better skills is who is better when they're both fresh. It could also be said that some fighters may need more time to figure out their opponent but I also feel like that's something that should be done in camp, that's what training and footage is for, in part to make you better yes, but mostly to prepare you for a certain opponent based on their style of fighting and their tendencies. Just my two cents

  3. Love the videos. They are very clear, concise, and thought out. There are very few people that can hold a viewers attention for more than a couple of minutes with a cohost to bounce stuff off of. You’re doing this and more SOLO (no cohost). Pretty badass man!👍

  4. Chael you're wrong about the rules not changing in any other sports for championships. Many sports do. In basketball and hockey it's changed from the best of 1 game to the best of 7 games. In the NHL during the regular season if it's a tie they have a 5 minute over time and the number of players changes from 5 on 5 to 3 on 3 and if it's still a tie after that they go to a shoot out. And there's only like a commercial break before the OT. For championships they keep playing full 5 on 5 20-minute periods with longer breaks between periods.

  5. Couldn’t possibly disagree more…it’s impossible to fight at 100% for even a single round…should fights then be relegated to two minutes?

  6. Soccer/football has extra time for later rounds of the competition. They also have replays if it's a draw. I'm sure there's a comeback to my point but I'm making it because I enjoy 5 round fights for title fights as its more important to get a conclusive result.

  7. They started 5 round fights because they felt like 3 rounds wasn’t enough. Going back to 3 round main events would be taking a step backwards.

  8. I think you make a strong point about protecting fighters as well as what fans really want to see.

    I say: 10 minute first round, followed by consecutive rounds of 5 minutes each, with the option to stop the fight between any round (live judges score cards determine whether another round is fought or not). One interesting option would be: if either fighter loses the first and second round the fight is over.

  9. In the video where the title claims five round fights are less enjoyable for fans, Chael spends 5 minutes of time telling fans they are selfish for enjoying five round fights. Chael, what an absolute legend

  10. Well actually in soccer, football and basketball the circumstances can change in the finals. If theres a tie. Then you go to OT.

  11. Absolutely. Dana King and Some fans of course want to or don't care to see the fighters hurt forever. But hes absolutely right. Boxing went to 10 rounds for a reason. The last 5 ruined and drained fighters and changed their careers forever. Same with the 5 rounds of mma. Last 2 takes soul and spirit away from these guys forever.

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