Sam Caplan’s weekly column for CBSSports.com is now available. This week, Caplan takes a look at Brock Lesnar’s UFC heavyweight title victory over Randy Couture during last weekend’s UFC 91 event. Since winning the title, Lesnar has come under fire from many loyal MMA fans who feel as though his victory has compromised the purity of the sport.
Caplan’s most notable complaint is that some of the same fans who complained that Kimbo Slice wasn’t facing top level competition early in his career are also complaining that it Lesnar is unfairly getting the opportunity to fight top-level competition early in his career.
“Many of those same purists who are crucifying Lesnar also crucified Kimbo Slice,” Caplan writes. “They ripped Slice repeatedly for failing to take on top 10 heavyweights while they scream about how Lesnar didn’t deserve to fight a world champion after only three fights. It appears that some of the critics are trying to have it both ways: They don’t want inexperienced, heavily promoted fighters to fight stiffs, yet they complain when they are given legitimate competition.”
Another position expressed by Caplan is his feeling that Lesnar is unfairly receiving criticism due to his past as a professional wrestler.
“It would appear Lesnar’s biggest fault is the fact that after graduating college he made a sound business decision to accept a multimillion-dollar offer from Vince McMahon and the WWE,” he began to state.
“For a 22-year-old world-class amateur wrestler, choosing a career path isn’t as easy as it might be for a projected first-round pick in baseball, basketball or football. There is no NFL of amateur wrestling.”
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