Much as Luke has had "hell weeks" as of late and whatnot I have been incredibly swamped with work and issues in my personal life recently which have prevented me from participating in things here at BloodyElbow as much as I would like (however I do appreciate Luke for his allowing my involvement in such a fantastic site). For those of you who don't know me...my name is Brent Brookhouse, and I feel that Georgia is completely right in not allowing Kyle Maynard to fight.
Look, allow me to start by saying that Kyle Maynard is a great story and an amazing athlete. My reasoning for saying that he should not be allowed to fight in an MMA match is not based on his not being a "tough kid" or even a fantastic wrestler. I am not saying anything with the intention of discriminating against him for his handicap.
Regardless, he has a handicap that does NOT allow him to defend himself. He has a handicap that also handicaps his opponent.
- While Georgia Amateur Rules prevent striking to the head of a downed opponent and he would be considered "down" at all times there is nothing to say that the opponent can't open up on his body, landing shot after shot with Kyle unable to fully block the impact. Look...a lot of people will vouch for the fact that they'd rather be repeatedly hit in the face than take a single body shot. I know Kyle's gameplan would involve staying active and moving at all times but he will ALWAYS be open for a shot. And that is about the only offensive maneuver his opponent will be left with.
- His opponent is at a disadvantage in that he is left with virtually NO way to win the fight outside of a decision or body shots. He can't throw an armbar, kneebar, kimura...etc. His training is rendered worthless because his options for attacks are limited to neck and body attacks.
- Speaking of training. No opponent will ever be able to find a training partner that will allow him to be ready to face this kind of challenge. Sure, it is difficult to find a puncher who hits as hard as a Chuck Liddell to train with, but you can find punchers. No one will be able to find anyone to prepare for this kind of bout...you can't even appropriately "simulate" with training partners. In most situations this would have to be looked at as unfair and potentially unsafe. Part of participating in MMA is learning how to fight safely and defend yourself. If you can't prepare fairly for a fight against someone you are put in a potentially unsafe situation.
Maynard is a great story and a guy that I respect the hell out of. I don't have half as much heart as him and I feel bad saying it...but I can not condone him ever getting the go ahead for a mixed martial arts bout.