You are hereSmoke 'em If You Got em'
Smoke 'em If You Got em'
(On second thought this is probably the wrong pic to get the point across)
There are alot of complaints surrounding the rules and frankly limitations when the discussing the amateur mixed martial arts regulations in Pennsylvania. Member M.Honcho explained the rules and drawbacks here. When considering alternatives to traveling stateside to compete, the options are limited at best. I have been tossing this idea around for awhile and figured what the hell today is
as good as any to suggest something potentially illegal and lose everything the day. My possible solution to our problem: Maybe inter- gym smokers are the answer, FIGHT! explains what a "Smoke" is :
Unfamiliar to many casual fans, smokers are a long-standing tradition in boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai, and mixed martial arts. These unsanctioned, often illegal fights are organized in gyms or private clubs to give young fighters experience in front of a crowd. Most smokers are held without incident, and often feature police officers as spectators or participants.
I posted that blurb because it is the closest thing to a definition of a "smoker" that I can find.
Weird fact: They are referred to as "Smokers" because of the smoke in the air from people smoking during the fights.
Now let me make a few points clear right off of the bat:
- I am not suggesting that we do something illegal.
- I am not promoting an illegal underground fight.
- I am not recommending having police anywhere near a potentially illegal anything.
Lets continue this conversation after the jump:
Due to our strict "No Snitching" Policy we will refrain from mentioning other gyms that we are aware of that run successful smokers, but let's just say that some gyms are willing to take the risks.
Because the contest would not be sanctioned and there for be deemed "un-official", the rules for this sparring session could be set to allow certain elements that a sanctioned bout would rule out. Let's look at the Pros and Cons so we can try and draw a concise conclusion.
- Aspiring amateurs get live fire experience without the limitations currently in place.
- Fighters would be able to invite their friends and relatives to events that are not +1 hours away.
- The rounds and rules would be agreed upon before arrival, so technically they could be set to make anything legal or illegal, including 5 minute rounds, different striking techniques, submission attempts etc.
- Experience is key to fighting success and with the ability to safely run group sparring events or smokers would increase the amount of times a fighter could compete.
- Obvious legal implications
- No official results = no recorded win/loss this works out for 50% of the involved.
- Insurance issues.
- Some promoters and/or athletic commissions claim that they not only refuse to recognize smoker events as official, some participants would be barred from other forms of competition entirely.
Here is a recently released video of PIT trainer (Chuck Lidell's Gym) John Hackleman discussing smokers and there benefit in places like California who also have un favorable amateur MMA rules.
So what do you think? Is fighting in a "smoker" worth the implied risk or is the potential consequences enough for you to steer clear?