A to Z Challenge: U is for Undercard

When a pair of fighters are featured in the main event, or even an additional pair in the co-main event, their images are plastered on posters and their names light up the marquee. Although these are typically the fighters representing the elite of their respective divisions, oftentimes with championship gold on the line, there is a long list of competitors who will also put their blood, sweat, and tears on the line that very same evening, yet they receive virtually no notoriety.

Not only are many of the fighters slated on the undercard kept in the shadows, they’re expected to deliver a spectacular performance when the lights shine bright. If they don’t push the pedal to the metal—and especially if they don’t win—the chances of climbing the ranks and landing a spot as the main attraction in the future fades into the dark.

A commonly repeated expression amongst the most devout MMA fans: the undercard is just as exciting as the main card. For the hardcore followers of the sport, they are aware that the more fights you watch, the chance for something incredible increases exponentially; moreover, if fights are on and you’re a fan, why would you miss them?

In recent years, the UFC, MMA’s leading organization, has improved their promotion of undercards, except many names and faces continue to slip through the cracks. For example, a UFC event is broken up into chunks—early prelims, prelims, and the main card—as a means of denoting where a particular set of fights will be broadcasted. Each set highlights who are the closers, and the trickle down effect leaves less to be known about the starters.

Though promotions may not place considerable value on detailing the athletes under their banner, the Internet, thankfully, is littered with content—from podcasts to in-depth articles—that breathes personality into those willing to sacrifice their lives for the sake of entertainment.

Prompted from the A to Z Challenge at: http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com/

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