January 30, 2011

Herschel Walker Wins Second MMA Fight: Former NFL running back Herschel Walker, 48, improved his mixed-martial arts record to 2-0 with a first round TKO of Scott Carson (4-2) Saturday. The match aired as part of Strikeforce: Diaz vs. Cyborg on Showtime. "When they told me he was coming, I thought it was a joke," said MMA instructor Javier Mendez. "He was very green, mind you, but his dedication and his learning curve was like nobody I'd ever trained."

posted by rcade to boxing at 03:53 PM - 13 comments

. . . I thought Herschel was black? . . .

posted by outonleave at 07:01 PM on January 30

I saw pictures of Walker, and for a 48 year old, wow. At a age when former NFL'ers have let themselves go to the point they look like overstuffed beanbags, Walker looks as good, if not better, than he did when he played. He also apparently said he wouldn't rule out taking a shot at football again? That's probably pushing it a bit, but the guy is definitely an athlete.

posted by dyams at 08:40 AM on January 31

He is an athlete but certainly not much of a fighter. Just because he has his body in good shape really means nothing. Once he fights a god fighter he will be exposed as the amateur he really is.

I would like to point that with a tremendous of exercise and diet, it is possible for a man to keep his physique up. Albert Beckels maintained a body that kept him at the highest level of bodybuilding into his sixties. None of that however really means much in the performance aspect of sports. That is why you can never judge a fighter's conditioning or ability by looking at their body. I admire Walkers drive but frankly I feel he is just a novelty and will quickly be eliminated from any real chance to compete with the best fighters. He is big and strong but other than that not much of a fighter.

posted by Atheist at 10:36 AM on January 31

I feel he is just a novelty and will quickly be eliminated from any real chance to compete with the best fighters.

Very possible. But it remains to be seen. I didn't anticipate he'd waltz his way to the championship belt.

I would like to point that with a tremendous of exercise and diet, it is possible for a man to keep his physique up.

Obviously, but a vast majority are far too lazy to do this, especially the ones who have earned enough money to be able to sit back and relax. Since football, he has been in the winter Olympics in bobsledding, nearly made another Olympics in the relays, is a fifth-degree blackbelt in tae-kwon-do, and is now in mixed martial arts. Again, as a 48 year old, the fact he's still got the drive and determination to excel, and not be just a fat-turd spectacle, is impressive to me.

posted by dyams at 10:55 AM on January 31

is a fifth-degree blackbelt in tae-kwon-do

I wouldn't be too impressed by this, to be honest. TKD isn't known for having the highest standards these days (see "airline promotion"), and the fact that he was awarded a rank that in a respectable style would take at least a couple of decades of dedicated effort, tells me more about the value of the rank than it does about his skill level.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 11:25 AM on January 31

I wouldn't be too impressed by this, to be honest.

Still probably more impressive than the high percentage of players who have been out of football as long as Walker has and would be hard-pressed to complete 10 pushups or situps.

posted by dyams at 01:35 PM on January 31

TKD isn't known for having the highest standards these days (see "airline promotion"),

I dont know where you get this info from, but as someone who is close to earning my 3rd degree, i can say the standards here are no joke.


Min time required training.

posted by Debo270 at 01:49 PM on January 31

Debo, I'm not going to get into a shouting match about the standards of different styles. My point is simply that you can't look at the words "fifth degree black belt" and know what it means, given that different styles have different standards. For that matter, given your own chart, it's pretty clear that there's a lot of variance within TKD, so...

posted by lil_brown_bat at 02:30 PM on January 31

I agree. Some places are more lax in their awarding of higher degrees. It can vary by your instructor. That being said, i dont think I would take my almost 3rd degree anywhere on the mat with Hershel

posted by Debo270 at 01:49 PM on February 01

The color of ones belt or belts means very little in the world of professional fighting. As a matter of fact I don' think Brock Lesner had even a beginner belt but yet somehow became the world champ. Of course that didn't last as he couldn't fight with much skill which sort of throws the whole karate belt thing in the trash.

Lets face there are plenty of guys with black belts that don't do well in a real fight and others with no belts that do. It sort of proves that the belt means nothing or at least not as much as experience, conditioning, training and heart.

For all those karate school belt holders, don't talk about what degree your belt is as it is typically a method of keeping students goal oriented and paying the money to the dojo. So if a guy tells me he had four professional fights and lost all of them I am way more scared of him than if he says he is a 100th degree black belt.

posted by Atheist at 02:23 PM on February 01

Plus you have to factor in crazy.

You might know Karate, but i know carazy.

I know many people with no "formal" training that i would pass on getting in a fight with.

posted by Debo270 at 02:46 PM on February 01

Neither of my comments were aimed at determining whether or not Walker is a good fighter or not. My only point is it's nice to see someone who could easily flow into a sedentary lifestyle, instead work towards different athletic goals, all the while keeping in incredible shape.

posted by dyams at 03:37 PM on February 01

I think your first mistake was trying to compliment someone for hard work, rather than sniping at his various failures in life.

Walker is simply an amazing specimen. I remember reading a story about him fifteen or so years ago that just blew my mind. On top of maintaining an incredible physique, the guy has never taken any sort of drug in his life. Nothing. Not even an aspirin. He had his wisdom teeth extracted without any anesthetic or pain killer. Would anyone here want to step into a ring against someone with that sort of discipline and toughness (and possibly a couple of loose screws rattling around)?

posted by tahoemoj at 07:02 PM on February 01

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