Don King, who is as crazy and energetic at age 80 as he's ever been in many ways, tells USA Today that he wants to enter MMA, start a promotion, and compete with UFC:
Calling MMA "sophisticated barbarism," he predicts MMA will complement, but never overtake, the "sweet science" of boxing.
"I'm looking forward to doing (MMA) too. And creating a competition between the UFC and whatever I call the MMA company that I put together," says King.
MMA fans who don't really follow boxing might not know that King is a very marginalized, rather small-time promoter at this stage. It's not an age concern, as Bob Arum is a contemporary, but the fact that King just doesn't have marquee fighters anymore. His top fighters at this point are Tavoris Cloud, Cornelius Bundrage, and I guess Ricardo Mayorga. He doesn't put on many cards anymore, and when he does, they're shows like tonight's Guillermo Jones vs Mike Marrone card, which is airing on something called WealthTV.
So will he enter MMA? Sure, he really might. Don's still a big thinker, but just isn't in the boxing game the way he used to be. If he thinks there's an opportunity in MMA, and he can get the right backing, he might give it a go. Will he succeed? No, he won't. King's complaint about boxing is that it's now being largely run by TV networks, who don't know anything about the sport. King is not an MMA guy and non-MMA guys don't succeed in that sport. Ask Gary Shaw. (He'll tell you it was "haters.")