In the mid 1980s (I am old) I moved with my mom from the Washington, D.C., area to the San Francisco Bay Area to start high school. As a die-hard Redskins fan, I developed an instant and profound loathing for the San Francisco 49ers, Joe Montana, Bill Walsh and most especially, that team's ill-informed, salmon-at-the-tailgate, dilettante fans.
As anyone who follows football knows, the 1980s were a bad time to be a 49ers hater. Between 1982 and 1990, the 49ers won four Super Bowls, establishing themselves as the dynastic "Team of the 80s." But for the teenage Monte Fisto, it simply wasn't possible that this group of nancy boys was the best team in football. They were soft, they were all about "finesse," they didn't play "real" football, and one day -- I was sure -- the real men of the NFC East would expose them.
I was -- needless to say -- dead wrong, and probably a little dumb, which I guess is permitted when you're a teenager. My hate blinded me to what I now recognize as painfully obvious. The 49ers were not simpy the best team in football, they were a revolutionary force that forever changed how the game is played.
Now, all of that is a long lead in to my central point. A small but vocal minority of you Jones haters out there are starting to sound...what is a nice way to say this?
I don't begrudge anyone their god-given right to hate anyone they want, for whatever bizarre reason they want. I, personally, have an abiding -- inexplicable -- dislike for Jon Fitch, despite the fact that he seems like a genuinely nice guy. I try to explain it, but I start to sound a little shrill when I talk about him so the less I say about it, probably the better. It's my bizarre hangup, and I'm sticking to it.
The problem comes when you let that that sort of hate cloud your judgment to the point that you start saying utterly insipid things like: "I’ll save my pay per view money for fighters that are dominant because of their skill, not just their size" ...as a purely hypothetical example... that things start going off the rails.
I don't like Jon Fitch, but I know that he's amazingly talented. Hate Jon Jones until the cows come home if you want. Cheer for him to lose every time. But don't let your hate blind you into thinking that he's less great than he is, cause it makes you sound like a dummy.