The first time I walked on the field at Yankees Stadium was for the Cotto vs. Pacquiao press conference back in September 2009. It was a childhood dream-come-true being a life-long New Yorker, and more importantly, a die-hard Yankees Fan. I saw Bob Arum talking to the press, but my immediate attention was in another place. Rather than talking to a senile old man muttering some nonsense about homophobia and how he robs Manny Pacquiao for 40% of his purse, I proceeded to look for a souvenir in the form of grass & dirt, which still sits in a Ziplock bag on my bookshelf next to my Reggie Jackson signed baseball. Little did I know I’d be walking around in the background of Ariel Helwani’s most notorious interview with Bob Arum. The video has floated across multiple media outlets demonstrating Arum’s blissful ignorance of MMA, and illustrates me walking back and fourth with a messenger bag looking for grass & dirt. Two years later, Bob Arum’s rant is part of a promo for the biggest moment in the history of the UFC; their debut on FOX. Meanwhile Boxing struggles to keep any segment of the 18-34 demographic as it quietly fades into the niche sport MMA used to be a decade ago. That being said, I look forward to watching the UFC heavyweight championship go down on Saturday night, and I might even stick around my TV to watch Juan Manuel Marquez beat Manny Pacquiao for the 3rd time in his illustrious career as Mexican fighters assert their dominance over all intruders of combat sports this weekend.
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