Chael Sonnen goes noble

It’s funny to think this will be my first post on Chael Sonnen. With all the vitriol that comes out of his mouth, Sonnen is constantly making headlines (at least when in front of the cameras).

In any case, Sonnen is no dummy. The man has carved a historic place for himself in the history of MMA – once termed by former UFC vet Brian Stann as starting ‘a paradigm shift in mixed martial arts’. He talks fast, loose, and backs it up in the octagon (don’t fool yourself, look at his resume). Sonnen is a showman, not a jester.

So it comes as a surprise when Sonnen takes a stance on issues that don’t pertain to disliking Brazilians. Recently, he’s been vocal about his disdain for how the Junior Dos Santos v. Cain Velasquez fight played out – particularly in how JDS took incredible amounts of punishment. reports that Sonnen notes that the doctor had to stop the fight to check on JDS twice. He believes the amount of punishment JDS took, “…knocked years off of Junior’s life and career.”

Ultimately, while he faults the referee for not stopping the fight sooner, he blasts JDS corner man with a remarkably pointed statement, “That was beyond wrong what he did.”  JDS jiu-jitsu coach Yuri Carlton contended their corner never thought about it, hoping JDS could pull out a fight-ending knockout.

MMA is a violent sport. It’s athlete sign up knowing they will get hurt. Like the evolution of the NFL in trying to steer its game down safer avenues (cough, because of money), MMA needs to do the same. We’ve seen referees stopping fights quicker – for instance, when a fighter goes limp on their feet before hitting the mat – and the sport needs to strive to continue this.

It’s reassuring to known Chael Sonnen isn’t always sticking to his shtick and thinks so, too.


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