Have you ever heard the name Johnny Hendricks? He is a Mixed Martial Artist. He is a good one, and recently he fought for the championship belt in his weight class. If he were to have won the belt, he would have been classified as the best fighter in the world at his weight.
I watched the championship fight. It was crazy.
Johny won the fight. I was astonished at his strength and athletic ability.
Personally, I am the kind of person who loves to see legacy established and so at the beginning I was cheering for the other fighter, the champion who Johny was challenging. This guy had only lost two fights in his entire career. But as the fight went on, and Johny kept pressing forward with a great amount of effort and persistence, I noticed that he had hardly been hit and the current champion was so beat up he could barely see out of one of his eyes.
Then the bell rang. The fight was over. Johny had won. He had proven to the world he was the better fighter. Everyone, including myself, anticipated the announcer calling his name and the president of the UFC handing Johny his new shiny belt.
But then the strangest thing happened.
The judges scored the fight in favor of the current champion!
Johny had no marks on his face and the other guy could barely see or even remember what had just occurred. This was one of the most outrageous decisions ever made by an official in any sport. It reminded me of when Russia “beat” the USA at basketball in the 1972 Summer Olympics. Everyone knows who won that game even though the USA did not take gold.
But the reason I write this blog is not to complain, or blame, or make excuses. The reason I write this blog is because complaining, blaming, and making excuses is exactly what Johny Hendricks did NOT do.
I, and I hope the world, was more impressed by Johny Hendricks than by any other athlete in the last 20 years.
If I recall it correctly, after the fight Johny said something similar to this: “I won the fight. I proved to the world that I am the better fighter. But I did not convince two of the three judges, and that will NEVER happen again.”
Personally, I don’t know if the mafia was involved, or if the judges were simply incompetent. And I do know that Johny had every right to storm out of the arena, to whine and complain to the media for the next several weeks.
But he didn’t. He hasn’t. He is better than that.
This is why I write this blog.
Johny Hendricks will be the UFC champion. And if I had to guess right now I would bet that he goes down in history as one of the greatest fighters of all time.
Because Johny Hendricks knows how to work hard. He knows how to give his best effort. He doesn’t blame. He doesn’t complain. He doesn’t make excuses. And because of this the entire world respects and honors Johny Hendricks.
This is an athlete who will establish legacy.
It all reminds me a lot of the Apostle Paul who wrote:
“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.”
Way to shine Johny Hendricks. Way to shine.