The MMA Chokehold
Is there a more dominant move than a chokehold in Mixed Martial Arts?
I’m sure the Sydney-based Kiwi owner of this esteemed publishing house spat out his morning brew when he saw I was writing about "the choke" on the eve of the Rugby World Cup final between New Zealand and France.
Luckily, I’m not tempting fate by writing about the inevitable failure of the All Blacks on the highest stage of the game, but the chokehold used by MMA fighters to literally squeeze the life out of their opponents.
While knockout punches, knees to the head and bloody takedowns make the promotional highlight reels, it’s the chokehold that’s the bread and butter "go to" move for most fighter’s looking to beat an adversary.
It might not be the most beautiful sight in MMA, but if you can master the chokehold – and the ground moves you need to manoeuvre yourself into position to execute it – you'll have a chance to win every bout.
But my fascination with the chokehold goes further than just it being the thinking man’s haymaker.
I’ve been wracking my brains to try and think of a more dominant, emasculating sporting play than the MMA chokehold, and I’m drawing a blank.
Calling "nuts" while you nutmeg someone in soccer, wiping out a kicker in an American football exhibition game and a slam dunk where you give your opponent a whiff of your ballsack are all "take your lunch money" moments.
But stopping an opponent’s airflow until they either pass out or feebly tap the floor in submission…?
That's when you better hand over the deeds to your life, because you’re owned bro.
Paul Hansford is the co-author of The Last Word - Mixed Martial Arts, which has just been released by Germinal Press and is available on this website.