There aren't many fighters who aren't world beaters that fans can get behind. In these fickle days, especially recently where we saw the tides magically turn on MMA fighter Fedor Emelianenko for racking up the third loss in his storied career, the second in a row, and fans decided he could not be the Greatest of All Time, because right now he isn't the greatest competing. That sort of logic boggle the mind, as being an all-time great is not something that can magically be diminished at the twilight of one's career when they suffer a few losses that should push them into retirement. If Fedor goes on a 5-fight losing streak to lesser fighters, maybe we can have this discussion.
Anyway.This weekend in Japan there was a J-Network kickboxing show, and one of the names on the card was none other than Fire Harada. If you don't know who Fire Harada is, think back to the K-1 -63kgs Grand Prix. Harada was by far the underdog of the whole thing, he came in with a distinct lack of skill but a burning passion and a perennial underdog attitude. He discussed his love for professional wrestling, especially Super Delphin, formerly of Michinoku Pro, then Osaka Pro more recently. That was his hero. Well, going into this fight this weekend, Fire Harada had spoken with a few news outlets about possible retirement.
J-Network has a UStream account now, and the fight is on there. I urge you, to watch this, in awe, and understand how it is impossible to not become absolutely enamored with Fire Harada and wish he could fight forever. [source]
Dave Walsh has been covering MMA and Kickboxing since 2007 before changing his focus solely to Kickboxing in 2009, launching what was the only English-language site dedicated to giving Kickboxing similar coverage to what MMA receives. He was the co-founder of HeadKickLegend and now LiverKick. He resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico where he works as a writer of all trades.
His second novel, Terminus Cycle, is available now via Kindle and Paperback.