KOed Stiff: Parallels Drawn Between Tua Tagovailoa’s Concussion and Usman, Askren and Overeem KOs

Few sports can rival MMA’s effectiveness when it comes to dramatic endings. Knockouts are possible in contact sports like boxing, kickboxing, taekwondo, and karate, but MMA highlights the brutal nature of sports due to stylistic differences between athletes.

People pass out while clinching, going for a takedown, standing up, lying on the ground, or even when standing on their feet. Mixed martial arts is an exciting sport to watch because of the unpredictable nature of a wild knockout that occurs at the worst possible moment.

Fans of MMA like matches with wild endings. They are always hunting for exciting battles to observe and contrast. In a recent case, an NFL quarterback was tackled and KOed stiff. Seeing his fingers spasm many fans were quick to compare it to MMA.

Tua Tagovailoa, the quarterback for the Miami Dolphins of the NFL, recently sustained a concussion while playing for his team against the Cincinnati Bengals. We could observe Tagovailoa’s hands had spasming fingers.

On a UFC thread, MMA fans likened the quarterback’s expression to that of a UFC athlete who has just been knocked out. Fans cited the viral knockouts of Alistair Overeem, Ben Askren, and Kamaru Usman.

“Have we ever seen a KO where the fingers do something similar to what Tua’s did last night?” the caption asked. Several people who commented on the page mentioned MMA knockouts when a competitor responded similarly.

One fan said, “mostly the toes do that, usman’s feet were spasming, same with the reem when Francis killed him.” Another fan added, “Askren’s feet too.”

A Redditor responded with a really good remark on the safety of MMA athletes:

“This is a very valid point and the reason why football and boxing and even hockey to an extent can lead to CTE more than MMA. But at the same time some fighters get flash KO’d multiple times in a night in MMA. Makes me think of that Johnny Walker vid where he got knocked out like 4 times.”

Another fan said: “And don’t like mma sh*t talkers find out rugby and football have way worse cases of CTE and brain injuries when it comes to the players, long term and short term. I’d much rather get punched in the face than be steamrolled by a man in a full set of gear any day of the week.”

Fans have long compared and contrasted the safety of players in the NFL, MMA, and other sports. According to a Bleacher Report story, there is no clear way to declare one sport is riskier than the other. The process of comprehending concussions is difficult, and each injury’s severity is unique.