I have not seen the entire show but I have had an opportunity to watch the Brock Lesnar and Johnnie Morton fights from last night’s Dynamite USA show.
First, I will give my thoughts on Lesnar. What else is there to say than he absolutely destroyed Min Soo-kim? Lesnar showed good technique and tremendous strength. Kim had no business being in the ring with Lesnar, considering he was just 2-5. Kim’s background is in Judo but throwing someone the size and strength of Lesnar would have been next to impossible. CSAC is so heavy-handed when it comes to licensing and match making yet they somehow allowed that match to be approved?
The fight was so short and his opponent was so poor that it’s really hard to evaluate Lesnar. Some people are saying in message forums that he’s a threat to Fedor, while others are saying they aren’t impressed. My feeling is, how can you really form a true opinion? I really don’t feel like we have many answers to the questions about Lesnar and his conversion to MMA. I will say though that his debut last night went as well as it possibly could have gone.
Lesnar, now a free agent, certainly helped his market value. There was a lot of talk that whether the Dynamite USA show was a financial success or failure would fall on the shoulders of Lesnar and affect the money offers he’d receive from fight promotions. But FEG did such a poor job in putting on the event that I think any fight promoter or executive of a major fight promotion will give Lesnar a free pass. His dominating performance in the ring will also make other fight promotions a lot more comfortable about offering big money for a commodity that is still relatively unproven.
I think the sky is the limit for Lesnar when it comes to MMA and I can’t wait to see him fight again, but this time against legitimate competition. I expect Lesnar to sign with a promotion sooner rather than later, because the sooner he signs, the sooner he gets paid. His representatives will most likely be getting calls starting Monday (if they aren’t already calling).
As for Morton, man, did that knockout look bad. He had no business fighting on a major show. Yes, he’s a tremendous athlete and football is a contact sport, but he had no combat sports background going into the fight. He hadn’t even competed on a high-level amateur event. CSAC should be ashamed of themselves for allowing that match to happen. Someone really needs to do an investigation in regard to that commission. As if Morton’s performance in the ring wasn’t embarassing enough, he further humiliated himself by refusing to submit a sample for a post-fight anti-doping test (reports indicate that he did provide a sample for a pre-fight drug screening). CSAC suspended Morton on the spot. I’m not sure if they will withhold his purse or not, but Morton was scheduled to make $100,000 for the fight.
UPDATE: Loretta Hunt from the Fight Network is reporting that Morton’s suspension is indefinite and that his purse is being withheld until both sides talk further. Also, Morton’s initial sample was to only be tested for steroids. Since he refused the post-fight test, the scope of testing of his original sample will go beyond steroids. Apparently the pre-fight test is for steroids and the post-fight test is to see if there are other illegal drugs in a fighter’s system.
Morton’s refusal to submit to testing likely signals an end to his career in MMA. It’s likely he had no desire to step in the ring again so he probably saw no reason to submit to further testing. FEG did have long-term plans for Morton though, as they felt he might be able to become some sort of a draw in Japan because he is half-Japanese. Those plans are likely out the window.
He had been saying that following the fight he wanted to pursue getting back into the NFL. The outcome of his fight will have no bearing on whether he resumes playing football or not, but his performance on the field in his final season makes it unlikely he’ll get another shot. Morton, a possession-style receiver, was not very productive towards the end of his career. He lacks the speed needed in the NFL to achieve separation from defenders and I don’t think there is an NFL team desperate enough to want to bring him back.
In a strange twist of irony, Dennis Rodman was at the Dynamite USA show. While playing for the Lions, Morton at one point had tried to market himself at the NFL’s version of Rodman by going out and getting a lot of tatoos and trying to act quirky. It never went anywhere.
Just like his fighting career.