Welcome to Midnight Mania!
The death of George Floyd last week at the hands of Minneapolis police has ignited the nation in debate, protest, and quite literal flames. Last week, dozens of UFC fighters posted online to offer their prospective and stand against injustice, but now martial artists are taking a more active role.
In an example of the many protests beyond the borders of the United States, there was a Black Lives Matter rally just outside the US Embassy in Auckland, New Zealand today. UFC Middleweight champion Israel Adesanya gave a speech at the rally and expressed his outrage.
The CHAMP @stylebender addresses the Auckland #BlackLivesMatter march earlier today. GO OFF KING pic.twitter.com/8q7Rs3uGK2— ISOALATION 2020 ☣ (@isoakavakimotu) June 1, 2020
“I’m pissed off,” Adesanya told the crowd (transcription via MMAJunkie). “Wait, hold up. How many of you walk into a store and have to put your hands behind your back just so they don’t think you’re stealing? How many of you walk down the street and have to kind of smile and try to make you see the person who already is scared of you, you make them feel comfortable?”
“I just moved to a spot,” Adesanya said. “I’m at the top. I go in the elevator, three times already I’ve had to have racist, scared white people jump when they see me, so I smile at them. So now I gotta go to the side and let them walk through just so they don’t get scared when they see me. Why? Because I’m black. Just because I’m black. What did I do? I didn’t have a choice. If I had a choice, I’d still be black.”
“Stylebender” continued onto talk about just fatiguing — yet important — it is to continue on fighting injustice.
“We’ve been talking for so long, we’ve been marching for so long, but it’s not about us now,” Adesanya said. “Shoutout to all the white people, all the people of different races being here, because we need you. We need you to speak up. We need you to say something, because like he said, I’m sick and tired of seeing those face get killed because, guess what, I see myself in them. And it’s heartbreaking, man. I’m pissed off.”
As tension and violence continues to escalate around the country, expect more UFC athletes to take more active roles in rallies and protests.
Big respect to Tyron Woodley for his response to the loss, but Twitter is gonna meme regardless.
#ufc #UFCVegas pic.twitter.com/3SzFzWoI22— The Strangle Squad (@_StrangleSquad) May 31, 2020
The current guess for the “hype train” Jimmy Crute is referencing is the one and only Johnny Walker, which would be a very fun fight.
Is Jon Jones the hero we deserve? The one we need? Who can say, really.
Jon Jones has vacated his UFC belt to stalk the streets of Albuquerque at night and keep peaceful protestors safe. He’s basically our Batman now.— MacMally (@MacMallyMMA) June 1, 2020
Is it even worth the effort to try and punch Francis Ngannou? It doesn’t seem to help anyone. Wrestle or die!
Ryan Garcia getting Francis Ngannou ready for the squared circle?— DAZN USA (@DAZN_USA) May 30, 2020
( IG: @KingRyanG) pic.twitter.com/4T8uV7Up1H
I’d like to use this Tweet about Matt Riddle’s WWE success to link readers to my favorite MMAmania interview of all time with “Chipper” himself.
UFC veteran Matt Riddle is now officially part of the WWE SmackDown roster. He’ll be performing weekly in primetime Friday nights on FOX. Riddle has been a standout in WWE NXT since 2018.— Marc Raimondi (@marc_raimondi) May 30, 2020
Work out with whatever is available!
Slips, rips, and KO clips
Being on the wrong end of a two-step shuffle overhand is never going to feel good.
BIG RIGHT!!! #TitanFC60— UFC FIGHT PASS (@UFCFightPass) May 30, 2020
It's over! pic.twitter.com/Q2K0iXFRLM
It would seem that Mike Tyson fella is pretty good at punching people.
May 30, 1987: A 20-year-old Mike Tyson improves to 30-0 (27 KO). Count the punches in this combo— DAZN USA (@DAZN_USA) May 30, 2020
( : ESPN) pic.twitter.com/3xxf0Nqq6F
Covering up and looking at the floor is simply asking for punishment:
One way traffic for Vladislav Chernobrivtsev, closing the show with a high kick upside the head #LeonWarriors pic.twitter.com/mMj7AxcvU4— caposa (@Grabaka_Hitman) May 30, 2020
A slowed down pole vault.
Pole vault slow mo pic.twitter.com/bBn3wdsj4g— Engineering (@engineeringvids) May 29, 2020
Midnight Music: The only thing that seems appropriate at the moment is a song of protest.
Sleep well Maniacs! More martial arts madness is always on the way.