History may prove that the day mixed martial arts went mainstream is when attorneys in the George Zimmerman murder trial spent a full half-hour discussing the nuances of "ground and pound."
John Good, a witness to the fight between Zimmerman and Travon Martin offered a credible account, stating that from what he could see, Martin was raining down blows on Zimmerman. He went further, describing the "darker-skinned person" as doing "ground & pound" on the person on bottom.
Zimmerman's attorney Mark O'Meara pushed further. "You described the position as MMA-style ground and pound?" said O'Meara.
"That's what it looked like, yes," replied Good.
Good also said that based on the relative position of the two, the cries appeared to be coming from Zimmerman, not Martin. Good then offered further details indicating it was Martin on top.
Later, during cross examination, prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda asked whether it was possible a police officer could have used the term "ground and pound" before Good did.
"It's possible," said Good.
Mixed martial arts also made an appearance for the other side, as the prosecution tried to portray Zimmerman as the formidable fighter.
A physician assistant, Lindzee Folgate, testified about treating George Zimmerman's injuries the day following the incident, and revealed she had treated him previously, mentioning that Zimmerman trained in mixed martial arts.
Folgate testified that Zimmerman had filled out a medical history questionaire in 2011 noting that he was exercising three times a week by doing MMA. Folgate said that he had "difficulty with falling asleep and exercising with MMA, but that has not helped." Prosecutor Bernie de la Rionda asked her to repeat the statement, in an attempt to frame Zimmerman, not Martin as a skilled attacker.
However, a UGer familiar the case, FredEttishFan, noted that Zimmerman trained at a gym that offers MMA conditioning classes, which bear the same resemblance to MMA that cardio kickboxing does to Tyrone Spong. The prosecution was not familiar enough with the sport to know what while an escape from mount (where Zimmerman allegedly found himself vs Martin) is taught in the first week, or even day of real MMA training, it is not covered at all in cardio MMA classes.
Of all the ways MMA could be introduced to the mainstream, it is hard to think of one much worse than attorneys using it to help define a party as guilty in a racially-tinged murder trial, but MMA is now mainstream, for better and for worse.
Any fight fan, or for that matter anyone at all can tell you that Zimmerman looks like someone who lost a fight.
However, it cannot be forgotten that 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was unarmed, doing nothing untoward, and is dead of a gunshot wound to the chest.