This ancient Greek game’s purpose was to bring your opponent as close to death as possible, without actually killing them. Because it was a bloodsport, the matches involved elements of wrestling, elbows, handto-hand combat, and kicking. Also, as it was a Greek sport, of course both competitors were very naked men. The combat sport was introduced into the Greek Olympic Games in 648 BC and founded as a blend of boxing and wrestling but with scarcely any rules. The only things not acceptable were biting and gouging of the opponent’s eyes. While the goal was clearly to beat to hell out of your opponent to either submission or unconsciousness, going too far and killing your opponent was an automatic forfeiture. Why?, you ask. Because any fighter killed in the course of Pankration was seen as the ultimate fighter (but not an ‘‘Ultimate Fighter’’) and thus the winner of the match. So there’s a small upside to getting beaten to death. Nice. A modern version has emerged, loosley based on the original but obviously not to the same extremes. Because that would be wrong.