Chuck Liddell: Playing it safe is the biggest problem in MMA

Sunday, July 21, 2013

MMA has a number of problems, including use of PEDs, issues over compensation, and it is still illegal to fight professionally in New York state.

However, former UFC lightheavyweight champion and current UFC executive VP of business development Chuck Liddell recently appearanced on Inside MMA, and said the biggest problem in the sport is guys playing it safe.

Liddell used UFC welterweight Georges St-Pierre as an example. Although it could be attributed to an increased caliber of competition, but there was a marked change in GSP fight resutls before and after his KO loss to Matt Serra.

In the nine fights before the Serra loss, GSP had three wins by TKO, three wins by submission (and a loss by submission), and three submissions. In the eleven fights since the Serra loss, GSP has had two wins by TKO, one win by submission, and eight wins by decision, inlcuding the last six fights.

“I’m probably not going to be popular with the fighters with this one, but my biggest problem is guys playing it safe,” said Liddell. “I understand it from a coach’s standpoint and a manager’s standpoint. I understand why you’d want to play it safe and win the fight, win every fight. I get it. But do I want to watch a guy go beat a guy for four rounds and then ride him the fifth round not doing anything?

“You want to be worth more? Go out and fight. Have fun. Knock people out. Submit them. Beat them. I don’t care. Just go try to finish a fight.”

“That’s one of the reasons I retired. To stick around, the way I was fighting, I’d have to start playing it safe. I went out on my shield. That’s the way I liked it. I fought that way my whole career. I don’t want to bore people my last three or four fights.”

What do you think is the biggest problem in MMA? And what do you think about fighters playing it safe?

Thanks to Yahoo for the transcription.