by Mick Hammond – MMAWeekly.com
(Photo courtesy G4)
While she may be relatively new to the sport of MMA, G4’s Fresh Ink Online host Blair Butler has developed a true passion for the sport.
Her knowledgeable insights have lead her to co-host a segment with X-Play chief correspondent Blair Herter covering MMA on G4’s popular daily Attack of the Show program, a first of its kind on the network.
Bringing her uniquely feminine view on the sport, Butler spoke to MMAWeekly.com about the upcoming Gina Carano vs. Cris “Cyborg” Santos main event Strikeforce fight on Aug. 15, as well as a myriad of other topics related to MMA.
“I think I got into (MMA) basically a way a lot of ladies did, which was The Ultimate Fighter reality show,” said Butler. “It had a very compelling character side to the fighters, but after that I became really impressed by the technical prowess and athleticism of fighters.
“After TUF 1 I was hooked and really started following all the fighters, PPV cards and everything else.”
As Butler points out, she’s not just a fan of the men’s side of the game, but also the blossoming women’s MMA scene.
“My hat is definitely off to Strikeforce because they’re trying to give the Carano/Cyborg fight (the best possible chance to succeed by) making it a headlining fight,” she stated.
“To me it’s the most exciting fight on the card, especially because the undercard of the Strikeforce show has fallen apart due to injuries.”
Butler is nothing but absolutely supportive of the women’s movement in MMA and urges other women to get involved any way they can.
“I think if women are interested in that, they should absolutely go for it,” she commented. “I think that it’s great having more visible women in MMA.
“They’re actually carving out a place for women who see it on TV and say, ‘Hey, I want to do that,’ and to feel more empowered to go into a gym or BJJ school or take a martial arts class. I think that it’s showing the sport can be welcoming to women as well.”
Turning her attention back to the men’s side of the sport, Butler is a also a big fan of the lighter weight class fighters.
“Obviously Carano and Cyborg are pretty awesome, but for whatever reason, I’m a big fan of the lightweights like Gray Maynard or Roger Huerta,” she said. “Sam Stout is really cool, and I like the Clay Guida (types), the really scrappy guys.
“I think the lightweight division in the UFC is amazing right now. Diego Sanchez looked pretty incredible in that Clay Guida fight; and Clay got kicked in the face and got right back up. To see Diego fight Kenny Florian again or BJ Penn would be pretty amazing.”
Everything aside, when it comes down to it, it’s the individual challenge of the sport that has Butler most intrigued.
“I truly love this stuff. I’m really, really a fan about this sport,” she stated. “It’s about going on there and only relying on yourself. Whatever you say before the fight or after the fight goes away, and it becomes purely about competing.
“It’s really great that Blair (Herter) and I started doing the segment on (Attack of the Show), because we both are really passionate about the sport. We think it’s something that our audience is interested in and it’s a growing sport.”
To keep up with Butler and to get her views on MMA, she urges fans to tune in G4 and check her out on the web for coverage on her other passion, comics.
“Please check out our UFC coverage on Attack of the Show,” said Butler. “Give us a chance, we really love this sport and we really admire MMA and it’s a real pleasure to get to talk about it at all.
“You can check out Fresh Ink Online with brand new comic reviews every single week covering new floppies (individual issues), with trades (collected issues) on Attack of the Show. Just go to G4tv.com/FreshInk to see all of it.”