By definition, a “hall of fame” is stated as follows – ‘a number of individuals acclaimed as outstanding in a particular profession, field of endeavor, locality, or the like.’ This said, people who are inducted into these fraternities have done things others in their field could not. They are in simple terms, more awesome than you, me and anyone else who would try to imitate them. In terms of journalism hall of fame, I sit alone in the corner office of fame; it is a side attraction as you walk the hall but still important.
Whenever the next name is announced to receive the glass octagon, a few fighters come to mind and deserve to sit with icons of the sport, former champions and trail blazers currently on the board.
ANDERSON SILVA – Debuting in June 2006 at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, NV., the 6’-2” Brazilian needed less than one minute to knockout Chris Leben and make an impact in the UFC. In his next fight, he captured the UFC middleweight championship from Rich Franklin in a violent and historic fashion; the title has been in his possession for the past six years, successfully defending it a record ten times and cementing his legacy as the greatest fighter of all time.
Sometimes controversial by toying with his opponents, he is able to flip the switch and destroy men in a blink of an eye and at the same time dodging trouble along the way. He makes it look like a sparring session inside the cage while the challengers give their all for naught. If there was one fight to define his career, it would be Silva vs. Sonnen I, where the champion was dominated for over twenty three minutes on the ground, securing a last minute triangle and retaining his belt and staying undefeated inside the UFC.
B.J. PENN – Achieving the rank of black belt in BJJ is something that takes men a better part of their life; BJ Penn achieved this at the age of 22 in 2000, and later went on to become the first non-Brazilian champion of the World BJJ Championships in the same year.
Having a natural dexterity, understanding of martial arts overall and a fighting spirit (that when provoked) matches a ferocity that few can match or withstand. Penn is one of the fighters today who started his career inside the UFC and went on to win his first three fights before losing a decision for the inaugural UFC lightweight champion. Additionally, his tenure in MMA has seen him achieve UFC championships in two separate weight classes (lightweight and welterweight) and he continues to compete today, wanting to fight the best in the world and not stop until he says so.
A fan favorite, ambassador for the sport, role model, and pioneer for smaller weight classes, “The Prodigy” has nothing left to prove to us as fans or other competitors but is a warrior that chooses to fight, leaving it all on the mat every time the cage is locked. A highlight reel to be shown at the induction dinner is a toss up: Penn vs. Sherk or Penn vs. Sanchez, both fights saw a lean, focused and driven Hawaiian dominating both men, who had excellent wrestling and striking skills to beat him but were stopped, beaten and bloody before the fight could reach a judge’s decision.
These are two solid names who have been spoken numerous times by Dana White, fans and pundits of the sport and will more than likely be inducted sooner than later. Reading this you may ask where is Georges St-Pierre on this? Although Georges is amazing and proven himself over and over, his recent wins were non-impressive and became mundane. Upon returning from injury this fall, if he can start to win in a finishing fashion and do it consecutively a few more times, there is no reason “Rush” should not be apart of the group.
Am I crazy with these suggestions? Can you thin of better? Sound off in the comments below or on our Facebook page!