UFC: How Much Does Joe Rogan's Commentary Influence Fans?

Matthew Ryder@@matthewjryderFeatured ColumnistMarch 15, 2012

LAS VEGAS - MAY 28:  UFC fighter Rashad Evans (R) reacts to the crowd while speaking to UFC announcer Joe Rogan (L) about his fight against UFC fighter Quinton 'Rampage' Jackson at UFC 114: Rampage versus Rashad at the Mandalay Bay Hotel on May 28, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)
Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images

When Oasis was on top of the music scene in the mid-'90s, lead guitarist and gifted mouthpiece Noel Gallagher said that if you told enough people you were the best band in the world, 50 percent of them would believe you.

He then proceeded to tell basically everyone with ears exactly that.

“Best” is subjective, and while even the most ardent supporters of the band would be hard pressed to justify their placement among the musical elite of history, there’s something to be said for his bravado. His band has sold upwards of 50 million albums as a result of it.

In a similar sense, if you stand on a table screaming at the top of your lungs enough, someone is going to look in your direction.

Don’t think so? Take in veteran UFC commentator Joe Rogan’s next performance. You’ll see the proof pretty quickly.

It doesn’t take much for Rogan to get excited and lose himself in the happenings of a good scrap, and people usually take notice. Furthermore, one way or another, most people who take notice are greatly influenced by Eddie Bravo’s famed pupil.

Rogan operates without a filter, which can be good and bad. You can count on him to call guys out for uninspired game plans or lacklustre performances, which is nice, but you can also count on at least a dozen full-blown fanatical overstatements over the course of a calendar year.

The result is that Rogan, a trusted face in UFC lore for his years cageside and commitment to the sport when it was contested in the tents of backwoods Georgia, inspires legions of fans to follow his lead when he begins his figurative table dance of excitement.

Rogan says, “That’s the biggest comeback in UFC history!” and you can bet that half the fans out there would assault a dissenter in his defense.

Rogan says, “This is the most interesting matchup out there for the title!” and those same fans are whipped into a frenzy of support for his decree.

Rogan says, “I’ve never seen a more boring fight than this is my life!” and he’s instantly got half of the MMA community demanding that the participants be cut in an effort to support his analysis.

To put it mildly, Rogan is a pretty significant influence on the average UFC fan.

Of course, there are those who don’t buy into his work so enthusiastically. They’ll say he’s stale, that he favours certain fighters or that his excited yelling can be too much to sit through on some nights. All fair points, even if the Cult of Rogan won’t have anything to do with them.

That said, Rogan is an experienced martial artist and a longtime TV personality. He might not be the single most qualified guy out there, but he’s earned the right to sit by that cage and make those statements. His fans can argue that he deserves it for a host of other reasons, but at the bare minimum, that’s why he’s doing what he does.

So, how much does Rogan’s commentary influence fans? A lot.

Is it something that those who don’t like it are going to have to get used to? Most definitely.