As we get closer and closer to the holidays, the time for buying gifts necessarily gets shorter and shorter. And, if you are anything like me, you are quickly finding yourself in a bind having told people things like, “Sure, I’ve already bought all your gifts” when, in reality, all you have done is solicit a link sent to your email that has a website where you can look for something. Luckily for those of us in this unfortunate position, I have once again scoured the Ebay to find the best MMA collectibles up for auction this week. Let’s take a look.
In my mind, nothing illustrates how far MMA has come in the past decade then looking back at some of its original stars. Arguably, there was no star bigger on a world-wide stage than Bob Sapp was in K-1 and Pride in the early 2000′s. Sapp rose to superstardom due to his size, American-ness, and aggression, even though his ability generally left a little to be desired. He parlayed his popularity in Japan to great heights, which included an assortment of ridiculous commercials and television appearances.
Now, for the rock bottom opening bid price of $79.99 you can commemorate all of that ridiculousness with this 7-inch Bob Sapp figurine. Although it doesn’t come in its original packaging, it purports to have been from 2003 and Pride, near the height of Sapp-a-mania. While I would not argue with you if you contended this is a great deal, I think I might wait things out a little longer when it comes to Pride memorabilia, as we have to be nearing the stage where new MMA fans don’t even know what a “Pride Fighting Championship” is, right?
Long before the days of UFC on Fox, Elite XC was the first MMA promotion to make it to the television “big show” by airing fights on CBS. An event in May of 2008 was the first, and featured a Kimbo Slice-James Thompson headliner which, until the UFC made its debut on Fox, was the most watched MMA fight in history. Of course, just two network events later everything would come crashing down for the promotion at the hands of a mysterious Ken Shamrock cut and the fists of a pink-haired Seth Petruzelli, leading to an epic cage-side outburst by a promoter named $kala. Only in MMA…
Anyways, with this auction you can both secure a piece of rare Elite XC memorabilia and gear yourself up for some MMA training. This glove set, starting at $129, is perfect for people with rare, disproportionate hands, as one glove is a large and the other is an XL. As far as I am concerned, that more than makes it worth three times the price of the UFC gloves you can buy in just about any store that sells sporting goods.
Out of all of the MMA collectibles I encountered on Ebay this week, I saved the best one for last. In 2008, original UFC promoter Bob Meyrowitz vowed that he was about to change the world of MMA again with YAMMA Pit Fighting. He would combine things that made the initial UFCs so great, such as one night tournaments, Bruce Beck and Jeff Blatnick on commentary, and some familiar fighters, with the new “Yamma” cage structure. The thought behind the new cage was that putting an elevated lip around the edge of the cage would prevent the stalling that many had begun to gripe at the UFC about.
Unfortunately, such an elevated lip led to fighters being completely unable to defend take downs around the cage, and extreme stalling on the mat. And, because the early tournament fights were one round each due to the pesky New Jersey commission, there were a lot of one-round, hold down decisions. On the bright side, we did get to see some of the original UFC stars in Oleg Taktarov, Mark Kerr, and Patrick Smith. Unfortunately, I don’t think there was much groundswell before the event to see these individuals fight.
Regardless of the success (or lack thereof) of the event, you can now commemorate it with this two-page program! And, at just $10, you really can’t afford not to. I mean, I have spent a lot more to commemorate other creative ideas that failed. Might as well do so with Yamma as well, especially seeing that it involves Butterbean!
P.S. I’m still waiting for information about the Yamma middleweight tournament that we were promised during the Yamma 1 event. It’s been for years, but I don’t care. And I want Steve Jennum in it. And Keith Hackney.