Mixed martial arts fighters are always fighting for something bigger than just the other guy or girl standing across the cage from them.
For years following Senator John McCain’s infamous reference to the UFC as “human cockfighting”, competitors and promotions alike had to battle the perception that MMA was not much more than legalized bar fights complete with bloody battles and little in the way of rules.
The culture of the sport started to change as more and more state athletic commissions began approving MMA, so long as they followed a strict code of regulations like any other competition. It was still an uphill battle until the UFC really got a stranglehold of fans following the initial run of the Ultimate Fighter on Spike TV that showcased fighters both in and out of the cage in a reality show format.
MMA still battles for recognition today, but the sport is much more widely accepted now than it ever was before, and as the UFC moved onto Fox television in late 2011, just about everybody took notice that this mixed martial arts thing wasn’t going away...Full Story