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Pride Fighting Championships: Pride Fighting Legacy
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Pride FC at its beginning is a bit different from the Pride we know today. During the first four events, each match has at least 3 ten-minute rounds, no restarts, and no judges. By Pride 5, there were just 2 ten-minute rounds per match and they had instituted restarts and a judging system. Due to these original rules, there are some occasionally slow matches. But even so, there are some absolute gems here in this set.
Pride, from its inception, stocked their cards with some of the best fighters of the day. I'd say in 90% of the matches, you will know at least one of the fighters. Some of them included here are: Mark Kerr, Carlos Newton, Mark Coleman, Gary Goodridge, just about the entire Gracie family, Vernon White, Igor Vovchancyn, Vitor Belfort, and a lot more.
But the best thing about this set is that you get a good introduction to some fantastic Japanese fighters. Namely Kazushi Sakuraba, probably one of the best(or the single best, in my opinion)and most exciting MMA fighters of all time. You also get to see the early matches of both Akira Shoji and Daijiro Matsui, and you'll quickly see why they are such crowd favorites.
Definitely the best matches in the first 5 Pride events are the Sakuraba fights. He takes on Carlos Newton in an amazingly technical match, has another classic against Vernon White, and he absolutely dismantles Vitor Belfort. He fights on 4 of the 5 cards and all of his fights are amazing. The other major gem here is the Shoji/Matsui match-up.Read more ›
Yet in alongside of these lackluster fights are many classics. Perhaps no two fighters shone as bright in early Pride as Mark Kerr and Kazushi Sakuraba. Kerr is now remembered as a cautionary tale of the sport; an incredibly promising fighter who fell victim to personal insecurities and an addiction to pain killers. None of those problems are apparent in his fights here, as he displays the dominance that earned him the nickname "The Smashing Machine" to, at times, an almost disturbing degree. On the flipside of Kerr's brutal style is Sakuraba, who later became a legend by defeating four Gracies including Royce. He was just starting his career but already showed the tremendous amount of skill and showmanship that would win him the hearts of fans all over the world. His bout with Carlos Newton is a wonder to watch and stands as one of the most entertianing and impressive displays of grappling in MMA history.
The collection isn't just about Kerr and Sakuraba though. Fighters like Rickson Gracie and Igor Vovchanchyn have impressive displays here, as well as other impressive matches. While it isn't as strong as later Pride events, it remains a must see for true MMA fans.
Many veterans of the UFC make appearances at these events and on this collection. We get to witness a fight between Kimo and Dan "The Beast" Severn, Gary "Big Daddy" Goodridge, the Gracie brothers (especially Rickson), Marco Ruas, Carlos Newton, Sakuraba, etc... Mark "The Specimen" Kerr debuts in Pride 2 and makes quite a splash in the sport. Vitor Belfort also takes on Sakuraba in Pride 5. This comes after Belfort is beaten in the UFC by Randy Couture, so it would appear he would be fighting with vengeance, yet Sakuraba picks him apart. Belfort appears to all but give up during the fight. He breaks down in an embarassing performance. Mark Coleman also debuts in Pride 5. He, too, was coming off of some losses in the UFC. He is stopped with a submission in a shocking loss to Takada.
Pride Fighting, especially in its early years, does not seem to be quite as exciting or quite as large a production as the UFC, but there is a lot of fighting history to be witnessed on these DVDs. Pride Fighting is going strong today and this collection marks its' genesis. I recommend it to any fan of MMA. There is also commentary by Pancrase legend Bas Rutton, which is an added bonus.
I will be purchasing the other sets so that I can catch up.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I found this to be less enthralling than the UFC MMA titles. I do not really like ring matches over cage matches.Published on July 7, 2014 by Sleeper_777
great dvd box set.1-5 the first events that started the pride mma.
super cool to see the first fights that started there
Pride fc, the name speaks by itself, the most glorious fights by the greatest fighters, when MMA was trained by real men, is a shame that like everything that gets to the US gets... Read morePublished on December 17, 2012 by Ran
this is a pretty good set of pride fights, my main reason for buying this is cause id like to collect all the sets. Read morePublished on September 9, 2012 by ty82
I got this set for $15 at the local used DVD store. While I can't possibly say I wasn't satisfied with a very good history lesson, I am a hardcore fan and can stand some of the... Read morePublished on June 6, 2010 by MMAPhreak21
It's Pride. If you are an MMA fan, you'll like Pride. All of the Pride Fighting Legacy series is great and I would recommend it to any fight fan.Published on February 3, 2010 by Amazon Customer
The first half dozen Pride events are basically one step above the original UFC's... Very far from what MMA is today. Read morePublished on September 4, 2008 by K. Kluthe
I have to admit that it took me a long time to become a Pride FC fan. When I heard of another MMA event outside of the UFC I was very excited... until I actually watched. Read morePublished on August 2, 2006 by death