The Invisible Web

Your Trip Into the Chapel Perilous

Mike Coughlin’s Half-Guarded Truth (11/23/2009): Karo Parisyan and a Growing Problem Within MMA

Posted by invizweb on November 23, 2009

Mike Coughlin posted this very well-written, mature, and thoughtful article on the Figure Four site.  In this blogger’s opinion, it is the best written article on the sport this year.  I hope Mike’s articles can be incorporated in a Best American Sports Writing or similar anthology.

By: Mike Coughlin

Karo Parisyan and a growing problem within MMA

Some battles are more difficult than others. Saturday night saw the unsuccessful return to the UFC of Tito Ortiz, the sensational debut of Rogerio Nogueira, and the beginnings of a debate centered around who is more worthy of fighting Georges St. Pierre: Dan Hardy or Josh Koscheck. What we didn’t see on Saturday, however, was Karo Parisyan fighting. At the last minute, Karo pulled out of his scheduled fight with Dustin Hazelett. The last two years of Karo’s life haven’t been very good. He lost to Thiago Alves by KO in April of 2008, had a win earlier this year over Dong-hyun Kim ruled a no contest when he failed a drug test, testing positive for prescription painkillers, and now this. If Dickens were writing, these would be the worst of times for Parisyan.

The reaction to Karo has been almost universally negative. UFC President Dana White’s immediate Twitter reaction was, “Karo Parisyan has fucked over the UFC, the fans and his opponent again!!! He will not be fighting saturday[sic] or ever again in the UFC!!” A brief glimpse at any MMA message board shows one fan after another condemning Parisyan. It’s easy to do too: Karo was supposed to fight, he pulled out, and then cited a laundry list of excuses. What’s more, this is the second time he’s done so, last pulling out of a scheduled bout against Yoshiyuki Yoshida at UFC 88. This becomes all the more angering because Karo’s public persona is not a sympathetic one. On The Ultimate Fighter, he was portrayed as a prima donna, walking around with his chest puffed out, demanding that people recognize him as being the end-all be-all of MMA. He looked like an ass. Hell, he probably is an ass! Couple that with a series of dull fights and this was the perfect storm: ass of a fighter, with boring fights, chickens out of fight at the last minute, leaving fans everywhere disappointed. Screw you, Karo!

Yet, a part of me can’t commit to hating him. I don’t know Karo. I’ve never met him and probably never will. I’ve long been annoyed with Parisyan and have openly expressed my disappointment with the Judoka’s past performances inside the Octagon. I don’t buy for one second that he’s afraid to fight; you don’t get in there with the likes of Nick Diaz, Diego Sanchez, and Georges St. Pierre and then lose your backbone. He’s been fighting in the UFC since 2003, I doubt he’s suddenly become a coward. Drugs are an obvious culprit for his behavior, and reports are that he’s battling a prescription drug addiction. That’s sympathetic, but still something I don’t go out of my way to cry for: there are plenty of folks in the world not abusing drugs who would love to be in the UFC. However, something caught my eye and it made me refrain from adding to the chorus of jeers: panic attacks.

As far back as August of 2008, Karo began opening up about his battle with anxiety and the crippling panic attacks that accompanied. At the time, Karo told, “Basically, eight months ago, I was diagnosed with panic attacks.” Karo said he “felt girly” upon hearing the news.

Continued here.

If you or a loved one think you may be suffering from an anxiety disorder, you’re not alone. There are a number of excellent resources available for you. There are exciting new advances made every day. Consult your local doctor for more information or visit

One Response to “Mike Coughlin’s Half-Guarded Truth (11/23/2009): Karo Parisyan and a Growing Problem Within MMA”

  1. […] Mike Coughlin’s Half-Guarded Truth (11/23/2009): Karo Parisyan and … […]

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