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Now THAT'S an interesting article on Badr : Badr Hari as a "Bedlamite" : )

I know some of you are bored of Badr, but some of you are definitely not. I m reading this article and find it really a great read, with some explanation on the Badr effect. So enjoy it or not I put it in here and we will see :)


Written by David Castillo on headkicklegend

Neil Manich wrote an interesting, highly literate piece on Hari, drawing parallels from men like Vladimir Lenin, Caesar, and Alexander. While it certainly provides a window into Hari the fighter, the fandom present in Neil's article misses, in my opinion, the more appropriate context over Hari, the man and fighter. Dave Walsh even chimed in, offering a retort:

Badr Hari represents much more of an ideological state apparatus; he is pushed and pushed and pushed as the future, as the best and that he can do no wrong when he does nothing but wrong. Badr Hari in his perfect form is what K-1 and It's Showtime want, as he can clearly carry them into the future and be the superstar the kickboxing world needs, but the ideal Badr Hari doesn't exist. The real Badr Hari is in tight with the mafia, has worn shirts supporting Amsterdam drug dealers to the ring in K-1, he drives expensive cars, wears nice clothing and didn't have to earn most of what he got.

I'll get back to Neil's post in a bit, but I have to clarify that I've been asked by the man upstairs (Matt Roth) to pretend to be a kickboxing expert, and to inform the K-1 experts of what they're all more familiar with than I am. Along the way I learned something: Hari is damn fun to watch. You guys already knew that, but speaking as a neophyte, the task has proven to be a pleasure. I'm not some MMA fan who ignores the arts that shape the sport I love the most (I began as a boxing aficionado due to my dad, who was an amateur boxer), but K-1 is just something I never followed. Watching Hari fight, there's an intensity present in his behavior that can only be fostered by the few. Something innate. Something instinctual. Is it any wonder the same intensity that informs his behavior inside the ring, informs his behavior outside of it?

When I saw Hari's DQ loss to Remi Bonjansky at the K-1 WGP in 2008, I was shocked, as you might expect, but there are two moments that cut to the truth of who Badr Hari is. Yes, 4:48 is one part, but the other is the 10 seconds before the DQ where Bonjansky is launching lethal kicks to Hari's body, and Badr wades through the barrage to unleash a more ferocious one. The Hesdy Gerges fight was no different, with Hari absolutely pasting a very competent kickboxer, only to lose with a kick to Hesdy's face...while he was down of course. Given Hari's connections to the criminal world, Dave Walsh even went so far as to explain the behavior as 'worklike' in nature:

There are also whispers of some of Badr's loss to Gerges and his demeanor being part of a fix in the fight due to his connections and the incredible betting odds for the fight. While these are just rumors and cannot be confirmed, it can help to explain Badr Hari's actions in the ring as well as his stone cold demeanor after the fight, as well as make sense as to why he'd do something when it seemed like he was in complete control of both the fight and his emotions.

Hari's criminal past is well known. While assault might be expected for a kickboxer with a short fuse, it's charges like that of arson which often link Hari to a realm beyond the typical, and into an atmosphere more nefarious. Wearing shirts revealing himself to be a proponent of known, and quite infamous criminalsin his homeland isn't exactly a subtle endorsement. I'm not interested in playing the role of "moral guardian" though. I don't condone any of Hari's actions. I condemn them, in fact. His actions require that condemnation. We're not talking about 'mere' misbehavior in the ring. We're talking about the actions of a certified delinquent. But I'm more interested in the relationship between the civilian, and the prizefighter, and how one compliments the other. If only Hari had some sort of moral switch...he could be a true great, right?

"If only"...it's the catchphrase for many troubled fighters; typically fighters who have the potential to be better than they are if only their heads were screwed on straight. ‘If only' Mike Tyson wasn't a maniac...‘if only' Anderson Silva wasn't so bizarre, we might have been saved from the Anderson Silva vs. Thales Leitesand Demian Maia fights. If only Badr Hari wasn't such a "Bad Boy", and so forth. These qualifiers always miss the point though. They neglect the truth that just as discipline can be an ingredient for achievement, so too, can recklessness. Or eccentricity. When Anderson Silva danced around at UFC 112, the same behavior that informed his antics in the Maia fight is the same behavior, I'd argue, that informed his knockout wins over Vitor Belfort, Tony Fryklund, or Carlos Newton: who but someone so fascinated by his own quirks would attempt reverse elbows, or look for a front kick as the knockout blow? Anderson Silva, by all accounts, is an architect of indulgence. That's his crime when a fight doesn't quite go his way (like against Maia), but that same behavior generates his accolades (like against Belfort). Silva's a destroyer, but it's a byproduct of his indulgence, and eccentricity: not as a man of one-track violence.

Mike Tyson, growing up a troubled youth, channeled his inner rage within the ring, but because that rage was something he took with him outside of it, how could he ever hope to truly contain it, regardless of location (although I think this perception is sometimes unfair insofar as Tyson was a real student of the game: under Cus D'Amato's tutelage he learned and was influenced by lots of black and white footage of old school boxers like Henry Armstrong, and Jack Dempsey)? Why are people shocked, when guys like Chris Leben, or Donald Cerrone, find themselves in trouble (a DUI in Leben's case, and a backstage fight in Cerrone's)? There's a yin-yang relationship when it comes to exciting, violent fighters.

 

And so Badr Hari is no different. His fights involve the same kind of gambling that accompanies criminal behavior. His lack of a moral compass, that distinct lack of safety, is precisely what makes him such an affective fighter. If he wasn't compromising his prime with civil misconduct, and bad behavior last year, then it he would have done so next year, or the year after. Hari doesn't fight for an honest wage. He doesn't fight because of the discipline the martial arts have offered. And he certainly doesn't fight because he's on a metaphysical quest. He fights for survival. In a Darwinian sense, sure, but survival insofar as without K-1, he'd probably be something much worse. Instead he gets to settle for a catchphrase like "Bad Boy", and all the hallelujahs of the observers who just want to know what a phenomenal kickboxer looks like.

As interesting as Neil's post was, I think it's wholly inaccurate, and sets up Hari as a bit of a hero (even if that wasn't Neil's intention). Hari has less in common with Cesar, or Alexander...men of inexorable volition, and more in common with someone like Nicolae Ceausescu. The Romanian Communist dictator was a man of significant ambition, but his will shaped his triumphs as much as they molded his failures, and the scope of his vision only impacted a small part of the world that would ultimately turn on him. This is Hari's fate: not of a revolutionary, but of a bedlamite who just so happens to be a brilliant kickboxer.   

 

 




Comments

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szanpan (2088 posts)
Posted: 2011-05-17 at: 11:14
PS. I wanted to put one then originally two photos, i accidentally readded one of them. But now in the final version i cant see any of them so i dont really know whats going on with them.. IMO this article has many interesting points yet might be that it s too hard on Badr
szanpan (2088 posts)
Posted: 2011-05-17 at: 11:17
IMO this article discusses some interesting questions .. I really liked reading it.
GOD (74 posts)
Posted: 2011-05-27 at: 07:09
happy
a bit much i think lol
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szanpan


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