Yeah yeah whatever #MacMay memes are dead, fuck y'all I don't wanna hear it
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With the recent Floyd Mayweather vs Connor McGregor event, lets not forget who originally paved the way for those two fighters and the unbelievable money earned; not only did Muhammad Ali elevate the sweet science of boxing, wrestling and sports as a whole but he also inspired MMA (Mixed Martial Arts). Muhammad Ali was the one man who single handedly changed the fight game and sports while bringing in record numbers of unheard millions of dollars and unheard millions of viewers tuning in (HALF A BILLION* people tuned in for the Ali vs Foreman, Rumble in The Jungle bout). Muhammad Ali vs Antonio Inoki was held at the Nippon Budokan arena in Tokyo on June 26, 1976. At the time, Ali was coming off a knockout victory over Richard Dunn in May and was the current reigning WBC/WBA Heavyweight World Champion. Inoki, who had been taught the art of catch wrestling by legendary wrestler Karl Gotch, was staging exhibition fights against champions of various martial arts, in an attempt to show that pro wrestling was the dominant fighting discipline.
The rules for Ali v Inoki were negotiated between the two camps and were a hybrid of boxing and kick-boxing/wrestling. Due to Inoki being aware of Ali's lightning fast speed, timing, accuracy and unpredictability he spent nearly the whole fight lying on the canvas kicking at Ali’s supremely gifted legs whenever he could, which eventually inflicted some serious damage, including two blood clots.
The historical bout was declared a draw, was panned by the viewing public and critics alike, but it played a major key-role in the evolution of mixed martial arts by showing that boxing and wrestling could be combined into one sport.