The appeal of Ultimate Fighting

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imageimageThe Ultimate Fighting Championship came to Philips Arena last night and I was, admittedly, a little intrigued. Muscled warriors clad in nothing more than shorts, sometimes something as skimpy as a square cut. I’m not the only one interested in that:

On Friday, about 2,000 fans had showed up just to watch these fighters strip down to their BVDs and weigh in. That’s more people than attend the usual local fight card on a typical weekend here.

Ultimate fighting, which combines boxing and wrestling with traces of other martial arts, has grown large by drawing from many quarters.

But reviewing the Atlanta Journal Constitution’s photo gallery took a little sexy out of the whole affair. Take the before and after photos (above) of Thiago Tavares, a 5-foot 7-inch, 155-pound Brazilian. His tats add to the appeal of his muscled physique, but once Kurt ‘Batman’ Pellegrino was done, the appeal was bloodied and gone thanks in large part to cuts above and below Tavares’ right eye. (Other results from the battles on Saturday here.)

To better understand the appeal of this hyper-macho sport, here’s some additional photos of Tavares:

Thiago Tavares (black trunks) vs. Naoyuki Kotani
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Thiago Tavares
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Thiago Tavares and Matt Wiman
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Thiago Tavares (black trunks) vs. Naoyuki Kotani
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