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Moments of Impact: Contact Sports

The release of Creed II calls for a round up of popular sports tournaments from around the world. | Powered by Warner Bros.

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A still from Creed II. Photo courtesy: Warner Bros. Pictures

Sporting tournaments have the power to transcend geographical boundaries. Teams bring together people from all walks of life. Applauses thunder and cheers reverberate in stadiums as well as from behind television screens. The energy is infectious. Pounding hearts brace the final moments that seal the fate of competing teams. And with that, history is made.

Warner Bros. Pictures’ Creed II is the continuation of the Rocky saga and the sequel to 2015 critically acclaimed and crowd-pleasing hit Creed. Sylvester Stallone and Dolph Lundgren reprise their roles of Rocky Balboa and Ivan Drago from the film Rocky IV. In this film, the story revolves around the life of Adonis Creed (Michael B. Jordan). Between personal obligations and training for his next big fight, Adonis is up against the challenge of his life; he is about to face an opponent with ties to his past—Viktor Drago, the son of Ivan Drago, the Soviet boxer who killed his father, Apollo Creed, in the ring. With Rocky by his side throughout, together the two confront their shared legacy, question what’s worth fighting for, and realise that there is nothing more important than family.

With the movie slated to release on November 30, we round up a list of contact sports tournaments from around the world.

 

Ultimate Fighting Championship

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Conor Mcgregor. Photo by: ©Jason Silva /Alamy/Indiapicture

The Las Vegas-based company knows how to put up a good fight. Bringing a special set of mixed martial arts skills to the ring, an eight-sided enclosure officially named “The Octagon”, the fighters compete for the championship title. The event, which was first held in 1993 at the McNichols Sports Arena in Denver, Colorado, has taken the company to all new heights and is supposedly worth $7 Billion as of today. The duration of the match varies depending on whether the match is for a championship title, or is a fight card’s “main event” fight. In all fights, each round can be no longer than five minutes and championship fights last for a maximum of five rounds.

Having taken place in August 2017, Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Conor McGregor, dubbed as “The Money Fight” and “The Biggest Fight in Combat Sports History”, was scheduled for twelve rounds and recorded the second highest pay-per-view buy rate in history, with the former emerging victorious and extending his professional boxing undefeated streak to 50 victories and 0 defeats (50–0), surpassing the 49–0 record of Hall of Famer Rocky Marciano. It was a professional boxing match between undefeated eleven-time five-division boxing world champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. and two-division mixed martial arts (MMA) world champion and, at the time, UFC Lightweight Champion Conor McGregor.

 

Football

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Antoine Griezmamm of France kicks the ball during the FIFA 2018 World Cup in the final match between France and Croatia at Luzhniki Stadium in Russia. Photo by: A.RICARDO/Shutterstock

With a religious fan following from all around the globe, football continues to reign as one of the most popular sports. Played by 250 million players in over 200 countries and dependencies, the origin of the game can be traced back to 1863 when the Laws of the Game were originally codified in England by The Football Association. Governed internationally by the International Federation of Association Football, the body organises World Cup for both men and women once in every four years since 1930 (with the exceptions of 1942 and 1946 tournaments due to World War II). The next FIFA World Cup in 2022 is set to take place in Qatar, making it the first Arab nation to host the tournament.

Followed by the World Cup, the most important international football competitions are the continental championships, which are organised by each continental confederation and contested between national teams. The league season observes a domestic system and features some of the world’s highest paid star players. Watch out for the five top European leagues – the Bundesliga (Germany), Premier League (England), La Liga (Spain), Serie A (Italy), and Ligue 1 (France).

 

Ice Hockey

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Quarterfinal game between Russia and Canada at the 2010 IIHF (Internation Ice Hockey Federation) World Championship in Germany. Photo by: Peter Kirillov / Shutterstock

This contact team sport is played on ice, usually in a rink, in which two teams of skaters use  their sticks to shoot a vulcanized rubber puck into their opponent’s net to score points. Recognised as the national winter sport of Canada, it is also popular in central and eastern Europe, the Nordic countries, Russia and the United States. It is believed that the game has evolved from simple stick and ball games played in the 18th and 19th century United Kingdom and elsewhere, while the contemporary sport of ice hockey was developed in Canada, most notably in Montreal, where the first indoor hockey game was played on March 3, 1875. These games were brought to North America and several similar winter games using informal rules as they were developed, such as “shinny” and “ice polo”. The sport joined the league of 1920 Summer Olympics. The National Hockey League played between teams in North America is by far the best attended and most popular ice hockey league in the world.

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