Save WAMMA!

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Save WAMMA!
(Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

WAMMA or the World Alliance of Mixed Martial Arts (for those of you who have never heard of it) is all but dead and buried. No one, not fans, not the UFC, and not all promotions not called the UFC, should let this happen. Save WAMMA!

The reason fans should want to save WAMMA or put pressure on the powers that be to have it replaced with something else that serves the same function WAMMA should have served, is obvious. Without official rankings we don't know what we are buying as consumers.

The reason for every promotion not called the UFC to support WAMMA or something like it, is it gives them fighters that will be ranked by an official ranking system, and therefore a value that translates into a level of legitimacy. Being the 10th or even the 15th best tennis player or golfer in the world means something, and so would being the 10th or 15th best fighter .

But WAMMA or whatever may replace it will remain an irrelevance until it is supported by the UFC, so the big question is: Why should the UFC support the idea of an official governing body?  The answer is that it is the only way, in the end, that the UFC can cement itself globally as representing the pinnacle of the sport.

The UFC and its supporters might argue that it is already, but there are those who will continue to argue that it does not have all the best fighters on its books. To suggest that a stable that consists almost entirely of American fighters represents the best of MMA is surely taking myopia to the point where it might be called something far worse.

Logic and common sense dictate that there are great fighters outside the UFC and the awareness of the American market, that just lack the opportunities to prove their worth. This fact alone will always give rival promotions around the globe scope to validate their fight cards, by arguing that some of what the UFC says is just spin, and by putting the focus on 'interesting match ups', 'hyped fighters', and 'built up' fights.

The most glaring case in point is that of Fedor Emelianenko, the Undisputed Heavy Weight Champion of the World. No matter who Brock Lesnar beats, no one, except the most ignorant and one-eyed UFC and WWE fanatic, is going to acknowledge him as the true champion, until he beats Fedor, which was probably why the UFC were so keen to sign him.

If the UFC could acquire Fedor and the top 5 fighters in every weight division, then it could take over the world of MMA for good, as long as it had an effective talent spoting operation, and put their weight behind an independent official sanctioning body. The sport would then move from its current focus on 'interesting match-ups', 'built up fights', and 'hyped fighters' to what it should be, which is giving fans genuine undisputed world champions.

The reason the UFC haven't supported WAMMA is that they don't believe it offers them anything, and infringes on its ability to make the fights it wants, but if it owned all these fighters, acknowledged by WAMMA or whatever the independant sanctioning body it chooses to support might be called, as the best, then the UFC could sign up to WAMMA, knowing that they controlled every title, and every conceivable title fight in the sport, and more importantly, this would not just be a matter of opinion.

Rival organizations could not talk about their being 'great fighters outside the UFC' anymore, because an independent governing body would back up the UFC in its claim, that it is beyond doubt, the Ultimate Fighting Championship, although those organizations could still justifiiably claim to put on good fights between good (officially ranked) fighters.

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