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Old 09-23-2007, 09:52 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Do *we* contribute to the upsets?

Does Internet Hype Lead to Fighter Complacency

Lately, I've been wondering if the buzz on internet message boards actually contributes to top fighters getting overconfident and under-preparing.

It seems clear to me that on these boards, the community fixes on skill differences between top fighters. We magnify them, and we overstate their importance. We think they are so great that differences in physical condition, heart and hunger cannot more than make up for skill differences. We basically create a group perception that within each tier of fighters, their skill is so great compared to lower tiers that whenever someone fights someone from a lower tier, it is a foregone conclusion. This, of course, is totally wrong.

Could it be that this attitude seeps into the fighters somehow? Perhaps they read boards like this, or their trainers do, or something. Could this be leading to fighters relying on skill too much, underpreparing, and under-estimating the importance of the fact that their competitors may be more motivated than they are?
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Old 09-23-2007, 09:56 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I'll think about it some but HIGHLY doubt it.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:03 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Doubtful, but if it was true, it wouldnt say much about the quality of athletes in MMA.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:08 AM   #4 (permalink)
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I'll think about it some but HIGHLY doubt it.
I know it sounds fanciful, but when you think about it a bit more, it becomes more plausible.

I am English, and therefore a fan of football (A.K.A. 'soccer'). English football lately has been burdened by the media-created impression that the current national team players are amongst the very best in the world and their national team is therefore a strong favorite for every competition. This doesn't seem to be accurate- our world ranking of around 10-12 and consistent run of quarter-final appearances is probably entirely fair. But anyway, many people believe that this attitude has been transmitted from the media to the players.

Now football is traditional media. Although there are many internet boards, they are secondary to the traditional media. But with MMA, arguably, the internet boards are a much bigger part of the media. Arguably, the boards are bigger than the actual news providers- maybe we are the media.

So does internet hype contribute to fighter complacency? If you believe that the media can alter the attitudes of sportspeople, for better or worse, it is very plausible.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:11 AM   #5 (permalink)
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i doubt many fighters would come onto the internet to see what the 'experts' think of them. regardless of skill quality, you still have to train hard to be fit and strong for each fight. chuck especially shouldnt have taken the fight lightly since he came off a loss.

i think internet hyping does change alot of peoples opinions on fighters though. when you get 100 people a day claiming how great shogun is, you slowly begin to believe them. even when you've barely seen any of his fights. maybe it was the internet hype that put shogun to the top of everyones top 10 list, or why matt lindland was the no1 middleweight for so long.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:14 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Doubtful, but if it was true, it wouldnt say much about the quality of athletes in MMA.
If it was true, it wouldn't show that they were bad athletes. It would show that underneath the fantastic physical attributes and will to win, they still use normal human methods for acquiring information and making decisions based on it.

People make judgments on the information that is coming to to them, and very often can't correct for systematic flaws and biases in that information.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:17 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by looney liam
i doubt many fighters would come onto the internet to see what the 'experts' think of them. regardless of skill quality, you still have to train hard to be fit and strong for each fight. chuck especially shouldnt have taken the fight lightly since he came off a loss.

i think internet hyping does change alot of peoples opinions on fighters though. when you get 100 people a day claiming how great shogun is, you slowly begin to believe them. even when you've barely seen any of his fights. maybe it was the internet hype that put shogun to the top of everyones top 10 list, or why matt lindland was the no1 middleweight for so long.
I think you're right that not too many fighters check boards directly. But some do, and many people who are peripheral do- Dana and Joe Rogan know exactly what the internet consensus is

I suspect that the internet consensus has a much stronger influence on how the fight community rates people than many think.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:20 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I bet fighters check the boards...probably not all cause i bet some of them could care less what the internet is. But im sure they read the forums like celebs "dont" read the papers etc
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:38 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I doubt the fighters read mesage boards, although the hype by the media/ufc could very well be something that could effect their training.
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Old 09-23-2007, 10:46 AM   #10 (permalink)
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I doubt the fighters read mesage boards, although the hype by the media/ufc could very well be something that could effect their training.
But do you think that our hype could affect the media hype, or people who are somehow connected to the fighters?
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