Saturday, November 3, 2012

Clean










Real competition carries an intensity based less on drama than on the thrill of putting oneself to the test. That doesn't mean it can't be sexy. Freestyle Combat League exists to give underground fighters the chance to go off script and find out who's better ... at boxing, gut punching, submission grappling, you name it. I'm drawn to mat wrestling, so this match featuring Aron and Joey Cantrell in a clean, by-the-rulebook contest caught my attention. I like and respect both fighters. Young, slim, yet tough and determined. It starts out even. Joey gains an early lead. Then Aron catches up. It's neck and neck for a while. Each leading by a point, then falling behind by a point. Gradually, one man wears the other man down and starts scoring enough points to establish a clear lead. Skill, toughness, and durability win out. In the end, the winner cleans the loser's clock with a six-point edge. No promoter makes the call as to who wins, who loses. Just nature, training, and the odds.

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