Sports fandom is a fickle industry, and mixed martial arts is no different. One day, a fighter feels like he or she is on top of the world and has the world by the short and curlies. The next, they’re quickly forgotten as fans move on to the next hot ticket that comes down the block.
Brian Moore decided that athletes who batter each other for the fans’ entertainment deserved better. The Ohio native grew up watching the UFC from its infancy and after forming a friendship over Twitter with retired fighter Gary Goodridge, the duo founded Legends of the Cage.
“This is an organization to honor MMA fighters and the men and women who gave their blood, sweat and tears to make this sport great,” said Moore, who is also president of LOTC. The organization boasts a roster filled with the who’s who of combat sports, including Goodridge, Pat Miletich, Phil Baroni, Art Davie, Bill Goldberg, Don Frye, Guy Mezger, Kevin Randleman, Mark Coleman, Butterbean, Forrest Griffin, Stephan Bonnar, Tim Sylvia, Jacob “Stitch” Duran, John McCarthy and Shannon Knapp, President of Invicta FC.
LOTC members travel to juvenile detention centers, children’s hospitals and other events nationwide, from Ohio to Indiana to Los Angeles, to meet and spend time with fans. Which makes all the difference in their world, according to Moore.
“Putting a smile on kids’ faces and having them know that someone who fought in the UFC came to visit them means everything,” he said. “Gary [Goodridge] recently watched some fights with fans, and after the event he received letters from the kids. It made Gary feel like a superstar all over again.”
LOTC has also worked with the Ronald McDonad’s House charity, and Moore is currently planning to remodel a building in Christiansburg, Ohio, to serve as the future home of the Legends of the Cage Hall of Fame. Being able to pay tribute to fighters who paved the way for the fighters today is paramount to Moore, he said.
“Seeing all the legends I look up to struggle – that hurts,” Moore said. “A lot of fans think MMA started with Forrest [Griffin] and [Stephan] Bonnar. Those guys are legends too, but there guys who came before Jon Jones and Mighty Mouse [Demetrious Johnson].”
In addition to holding events nationwide and building a hall of fame for fighters, Moore is planning a documentary and feature film about MMA, and plans to hold a podcast featuring well-known names from MMA’s past.
“I just want to honor the men and women who gave fans a lot of memories,” Moore said. “Legends of the Cage is coming, and fighters should know their options.”
Image Credit: Legends of the Cage