How to Fix the Eye Poke Problem?
Joe Rogan was pissed. The eye poke Michael bisping hit Alan Belcher with at UFC 159 was deep and it was potentially career threatening. If you have ever been poked in the eye with significant force you can recall how bad it felt and how hard it was to see. Now imagine that force coming from an athlete like Bisping.
A suggestion that would not solve the issue but be entertaining as hell would be one boxing glove on the lead hand. Hardcore fans can recall Art Jimmerson fighting Royce Gracie at UFC 1. No one was sure what he was thinking, but it has provided lots and lots of laughs over the years. You couldn’t poke anyone in the eye and it would look hilarious, especially when the fit hit the ground.
A serious option is to round off the end of those gloves so the fingers can’t protrude. This seems to defeat the purpose of a unique MMA utility glove, but it does keep an athlete’s eyes relatively protected from finger damage. Grappling would only be slightly more challenging when it came to locking in submissions, but it would be doable.
One more option that I can guarantee the athletes in the UFC would riot over is eyewear. Basketball type goggles if you will. Upsides? Protection without really hindering vision. Downsides? What if they cracked from force and sent protective covering in to the eye? There is also the potential fogging up that would render a fighter basically blind in the Octagon. What about the possibility of unnecessary stoppages for equipment malfunctions.
There are no real clear-cut answers. What do you think? Post your thoughts in the comments section below.