Cagewriter - Mixed Martial Arts

It's the way of the business now with columnists, radio hosts and television talking heads, why would you actually gauge your readers, viewers or listeners opinions? Make up your own. And better yet, make it up before you actually see the event you're covering. It's easier to write a column on deadline when you've already decided what you're going to write. T.J. Simers from L.A. Times generally knows his take on an event before he arrives. UFC 100 was no different. The always grumpy and contrarian columnist came to Las Vegas with a "UFC is for morons" column and it played out nicely. He had tons of minor moments he could pluck from the six hour show to "fit" his column:

Jon Jones' opponent taps out, and a TV reporter says, "Jones is an animal," visiting hours at the zoo just beginning.

You never hear someone called an "animal" on the football field or basketball court, right?  

Tom Lawler, the same guy who appeared at the weigh-in a day earlier with "just bleed" painted across his chest, enters the arena with dog leash in hand, pulling some guy with red hair on all fours and a bone in his mouth.

It's a ring entrance and some flair, nothing more, nothing less, but Simers chooses to overhype it because it "fits" his column.

As for Coleman and his rearranged face, the pay-per-view announcer is telling the folks at home he has stayed away from his daughters the last 70 days to train for this. "Daddy's coming home," Coleman screams into the camera when the fight's over. "You're my life, baby." Great, that now leaves the two daughters at home to duke it out in an effort to determine who Daddy was talking about. Maybe UFC 101?

Wow, Simers is so into this column he chooses to crack on a nice moment of true emotion from Coleman. That fight clearly fell short of "fitting" his column.

No need to pull anymore excerpts.

We know what's coming. But that's where the newspaper business is now. Lots of older dudes who still find tennis, the Indy 500, LPGA and The Kentucky Derby fascinating. The 1970's are finished fellas and Secretariat, Jackie Stewart and JoAnne Carner ain't walking through that door anytime soon.

Hell, Simers didn't even like his seat at the event. While not watching two of the fights, Simers came into the press room and bitched about his front row seat. He couldn't see because of the photographers. That's the same seat people paid a reported $4000-$20,000 to grab. Everyone's entitled to their opinion about MMA but when it's already set in stone before you sit in your "lousy" seat, why bother?

These guys are writing for an audience that's 50-plus, that also doesn't like this internet stuff or cell phones or Twitter. They're dooming the print business to a slow and ugly death. Or just trying to find a quicker way to get their buyout.

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