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Our MMA holiday wishes

12/26/2011

Chad Dundas: My holiday wish is for an improved scoring system for MMA and better, more educated judges to utilize it. Scoring fights will probably always be a subjective process and one that stirs debate among fans, but MMA only eggs us on when its unified rules rely on murky concepts like “Octagon control” and “effective” striking and grappling. Especially when at times the ringside officials charged with enforcing the rules don’t seem to know a wristlock from a wrist watch. Improving either factor would fill my season with cheer.

Josh Gross: In virtually every respect to the way we live, 2011 boiled down to the principle of fairness. So it's no coincidence that my holiday wishes plays off that theme. I wish PED-free mixed martial artists the ability to fight on fair grounds. I wish promoters fairly, not arbitrarily, mete out justice to the men and women who make them money. I wish hard-working MMA journalists and reporters the ability to fairly ply their trade. I wish that politicians give MMA a fair shake. I wish politicians who don't are fairly booted out of office. And I wish fans feel as if they're getting a fair bang for their buck. Happy Holidays, everyone.

Franklin McNeil: When revealing my Christmas wish, I strive to be practical. It’s important to be reasonable, ask for something that can be attained without placing undue stress on the gift-giver. So this year I opt not to go too far outside my personal box, and ask that UFC matchmaker Joe Silva put Jon Jones and Rashad Evans inside the Octagon together by the summer of 2012. This fight deserves to be made. These two must be allowed to finally settle their personal differences. Besides, this highly anticipated bout has the potential to be very exciting. Silva, of course, will need help in granting my wish. For this fight to have any chance of happening next year, Evans must survive Phil Davis on Jan. 28.

Chuck Mindenhall: All I want for Christmas is Chael Sonnen versus Anderson Silva II. That fight, given how the first went down and all the menacing aftermath, would be huge on the historical context alone. But couple that with Sonnen's dark-tinted badinage, him fighting in Sao Paulo in front of 100,000 throaty partisans, and acting as Silva's true (and only) rival, and it becomes a one-of-a-kind situation. As a stocking stuffer? Give me Dan Henderson against Jon Jones."

Brett Okamoto: My wish, as unlikely as it may seem, is that Anderson Silva finds a way to compete three times in 2012. If there is one negative about this sport, it’s that we only get to see our favorite athletes compete two, three, maybe four times per year. While doing my best to remain professional, I am a fan of Silva. It feels like history is unfolding in front of you when the man fights. In 2011, Silva was in a cage for a grand total of 10 minutes and 29 seconds. He hasn’t fought three times in one calendar year since 2008. If, somehow, he can squeeze that in next year even given his current injury, I’d like to see it.

Darius Ortiz: This combines my X-mas AND birthday wishes so you better be listening up and taking notes, MMA gods. For '12, give me some MMA in NYC. First event, outdoors, at Citi Field. Talk about a "pretending to work" night. Let's make this happen!