Let’s go back to 2005. A little computer game called World of Warcraft had just come out and taken the world by storm. The game was still in it’s relative infancy (for a game) and no one could figure out what was the dominant style. Warlocks were a pain in everyone’s behind and forced everyone to submit to their curses. I would call a 2005 Warlock a 1993 Royce Gracie, or maybe BJJ in general. Of course Jens Pulver and his Rogue would would represent little dudes punching us (kidney shotting) and dodging out of the way with an unending gas tank. Then over the years, the homogenization of WoW became a sad reality, everyone was eventually given similar abilities in order to ‘balance’ the game and the extremely fun PVP.
Now MMA has taken a similar path, a ‘clash of styles’ is only that in name, if you make to the bigger shows and you have little to no striking but a crazy ground game then you’re in the minority, some might call you a Mage, a glass cannon. Nowadays fighters have been able to train their entire adult lives or longer in order to defeat other humans in hand to hand combat while locked in a cage for money and our entertainment in as many fashions as possible. Those people are Paladins, and more than likely have a very strong wrestling background. Sometimes infuriating, seemingly always winning.
In a few weeks we are going to see the most pure clash of styles in women’s MMA history when Miesha Tate defends her title against Ronda Rousey. Paladin Vs. Mage? Maybe. What we do know is that Miesha believes wrestling over judo 9 times out of 10.