It started off with the traditional 3 words Bruce Buffer always uses: We… Are…Live…
But a slight change of format was needed to address the frightening event that that occurred 5 days prior: a catastrophic collapse of the heart suffered by UFC heavyweight Shane Del Rosario.
Buffer asked that the lights be dimmed and people stand for a moment of silence. The crowd was quiet, quieter than a library with no one in it. All that could be seen was the flashing of cameras and flashlights that glimmered as bright as the lighters held up by rock and roll fans at an Ozzy Ozborn concert in 1986.
As the moment of silence came to an end the crowd began to cheer. The cheering became loud, really loud. Shane, Shane, Shane they shouted. The shouting became louder and louder, so loud that the Mandalay Bay Event center recorded the highest decibel level ever reached in the stadium. The crowd was electric. Every person in the building had butterflies in their stomachs and chills running up their their spines.
In the hospital room occupied by an unconscious Shane Del Rosario was a television tuned in to the noise being made in Las Vegas. Family and friends in the hospital with Shane joined the cheering. Numbers: the power in numbers had entered the equation. Some +/- 15,000 people present (along with hundreds of thousands watching on TV) were all simultaneously talking to Shane as he continued to hold on to his life with everything he had. The numbers, the volume of care and hope given to Shane to let him know he wasn't fighting this fight alone- we were there with him.
Then I popped up and realized I was daydreaming. I have to say, I'm disappointed in the lack attention this situation received last Saturday night. Why wasn't there a moment of silence? Just about every sport does that when one of there kind falls. I'm not a religious man and don't really know where I stand on spirituality but I do believe that acts like the one that didn't happen make a difference in whether one lives or dies.
Dana could've gotten ahold of Shane's family to ask them to please tune in. Should the hospital not get that channel I'm sure Dana could find a way to make sure it was on in Shane's room. And why didn't every fighter to get a post fight interview last night give a shot out to Shane? The UFC could've encouraged them to do that in the same manner they encourage fighters to call out other fighters.
As a guy who owns a business and has employees I can tell you that you have to take care of your guys (or girls). They are the face of your company and they all hold a part in making the company successful (or unsuccessful if you play your cards wrong). This situation was a double edged sword. Along with taking care of your employees there was an opportunity to show the level of unity and respect that some politicians say MMA lacks. All that aside, gestures like these should be extended to those in need because it's the right thing to do. It is morally and ethically the right call.
Where was the love?