There was a time in combat sports where if two heavyweights collided, the entire world stopped spinning, sidewalks were rolled up and all eyes across the globe tuned in to watch.
In an era passed within the sweet science, with names like Ali and Frazier, or Tyson and Lewis, the world could not look away. Two men and the war they brought with them captivated us all.
Tragically, those days are long since over.
To this very minute, the only bout on the entire boxing radar that might gather any clout is a unicorn of a match between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao.
Short of that matchup, boxing is dormant to the casual combat sports fan.
It seems like an eternity ago that high profile fights were featured on network television. No PPVs—just a time slot, two warriors and a fight that promised to entertain.
Today, that all changes. It changes because of a monumental, landmark deal recently struck between FOX and the UFC.
Starting November 12, these two entertainment companies will once again bring high profile combat sports back to the limelight for all to enjoy.
Featuring the UFC heavyweight championship, contested in an era that has redefined the heavyweight division, the UFC on FOX will capture not only a nation but the entire world.
Once this happens, the wildfire that has been MMA's rise to power will burn out of control and consume the planet.
The reason for this is not simply free MMA on network television. It is not the brands FOX or UFC.
It is, as it was in the past, the quality of the athletes being featured in one of the most competitive and dynamic fights the MMA heavyweight division has ever seen.
Cain Velasquez versus Junior Dos Santos marks an entry into an era that will change the face of MMA forever. The matchup guarantees that once the general public gets a taste, this sport will never be the same.
Two elite athletes, with lethal power in their hands, chins of hardened granite, who carry great pride in what they are capable of, will touch gloves and go to battle for us all.
It is a perfect recipe for the UFC and FOX to introduce this amazing sport to the world.
MMA has long since been building its reputation and righting wrongs along the way. It has transformed itself from a misunderstood display of violence and aggression to a world class and highly contested form of combat arts.
Dos Santos versus Velasquez for the UFC heavyweight title exemplifies exactly how far this sport has come. There have been, and will be, many wars the MMA fans will cherish.
Just as recently as this past weekend, Nick Diaz and B.J. Penn unleashed holy hell inside the Octagon.
Earlier this year, Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber put on one of the best fights this sport has ever seen.
But what makes this bout ideal for mainstream introduction to the general public is that nostalgia of looking back to the days of Ali-Frazier.
Leonard-Duran was an amazing battle among extremely skilled fighters, but heavyweights hold a special place in the heart of all fight fans.
With that in mind, bringing two of the most dynamic heavyweights the sport has ever known into the Octagon to compete for that title is a rare opportunity for MMA to put its stamp on combat sports.
The bout is so closely contested, it must be a nightmare to be a Vegas odds-maker. Both men have proven to show ruthless aggression, precision striking and devastating power.
Their heart and drive simply cannot be rivaled. Well, unless by each other.
They are near mirror images of each other in their abilities, however unique those abilities may be. This will be a monumental match that will prove to be an instant classic.
Almost without a doubt, the fight will require a rematch, no matter what the result.
The MMA community already knows. They got the memo years ago.
It will be extremely compelling to sit back and watch as the rest of the world catches up when these two tape up their weapons of mass destruction, strap on four-ounce gloves, and show the world exactly what they have been missing.
After November 12, things will never be the same in this sport.
This article originally featured at Hurtsbad MMA. Follow me on twitter @hurtsbadmma
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