It's the 15th birthday of The Ultimate Fighting Championship, and everyone in the MMA blogosphere is reflecting on early memories of the UFC.
I was in high school and got together with some friends to watch UFC 1, and I guess my overall reaction was that I found the fights fascinating. Until I saw Royce Gracie, I don't think I ever had any concept of winning a fight without punches and kicks. It was really amazing to me that Gracie, a relatively small man, could choke an opponent into unconsciousness or break his arm if he didn't tap out first.
But at the same time, I didn't find the fights all that exciting, especially in contrast with the second Evander Holyfield-Riddick Bowe fight, which took place the weekend before UFC 1. I didn't think I was watching a great athletic event, the way I think I'll be watching a great sporting event Saturday night when I watch UFC 91.
UFC Turns 15: Memories of Royce Gracie originally appeared on MMA FanHouse on Wed, 12 Nov 2008 15:01:00 EST . Please see our terms for use of feeds.