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Kimbo Slice: Dollars and Sense

kimboNow that the dust has settled and the highly anticipated debut of Kimbo Slice on The Ultimate Fighter has been completed, I’m asking myself, why was I so hyped to see this fight?

I knew deep down Kimbo didn’t have a chance to win his fight against a seasoned veteran like Roy Nelson, but I found myself rooting for him none the less.

You see although Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson, is not quite a mixed martial artist, he is a fighter that has what very few ever achieve. He has the ability to evoke emotion within the MMA community and beyond.

Very few fighters in this young sport of ours have had the ability to create so much hype and buzz as a Kimbo Slice. The newly found viewers for this seasons TUF can be directly attributed to Kimbo’s involvement alone, and now that he has fought and lost, will probably lose interest in the shows remainder. However the ratings alone, will dictate at least a few appearances by Kimbo in pay-per-views events in the future. (Rumored to be UFC 107 in December)

And why not? At the age of 35, he may not become anything more than a spectacle, but he’s a spectacle people will continue to watch. If he puts in much needed work and shows halfway decent fights, his stock will continue to rise.

In all honesty, I am not a fan of Kimbo. It’s not because of how he’s portrayed, or all the rumors, or even how he’s become a huge star over lackluster fights, its because he’s not a good mixed martial artist. Again, with work on his game (he showed above average takedown defense against Nelson by the way) he might become more relevant on a ranking scale, although not likely. But, because he evokes emotion, I will still continue to follow his progression.

Kimbo, along with fighters like Brock Lesnar, Tito Ortiz, and Chuck Liddell, to name a few, have a strange way of drawing people to them. They have become bigger than the fights themselves, with larger than life personas. There almost always seems to be no gray area with these types of fighters. Fans either love them or hate them, but they most certainly have an opinion. They will continue to flock to arenas and television sets to see the outcome of their fights.

So, whether you’re a fan of Kimbo from his days on YouTube, you like that he tots guns, or you cant stand the fact that a street fighter has made a name for himself in this ever growing sport of ours. There’s one thing you can’t deny, you’ll watch him again.

“You know what I’m sayin.”

30 COMMENTS
  • xtreme_machine says:

    like the ending dude

  • edbuzz says:

    Kimbo comes across as a humble guy and I have to admit that I root for him because he comes across as a good guy. The reason I’m such a big fan of the UFC is because of the TUF series. I get a chance to learn the fighters personalities and become a fan of the good guys/gentlemen and hate the jerks. I become invested with the fighters and so I feel I know them. I don’t have a lot of interest in watching MMA fights were I know nothing of the fighters so the TUF has been instrumental in me becoming a huge fan of the UFC.

    Say what you want about Kimbo but he seems like a decent enough person with the right attitude and so I root for him.

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I am with you on that edbuzz.

  • edub says:

    Kimbo would lose if he fought BJ Penn.

  • metalmulisha says:

    edub: Kimbo would lose if he fought BJ Penn.

    That’s funny you mentioned Penn because when Kimbo was in EliteXC that’s the exact example Dana used when taking a cheap shot at Kimbo. Now Dana thinks Kimbo is the toughest guy at the barbecue.

  • danw84 says:

    I don’t think Dana ever thought Kimbo wasn’t the toughest guy at the barbecue, but the point is it’s still just a barbecue, and not really a place to brag about being the toughest guy there.

  • BiG BaD BuLL says:

    great article. agree completely. mayweather is another one. hate that mo’fo, but I watch his fights just in the hope to see him lose.

  • neijia says:

    I am rooting for Kimbo after seeing his seemingly sincere attitude to improve on TUF. A good plot line of street fighter becomes mixed martial artist. And let’s face it, the commercial draw is there. There were 528000 results for Lyoto Machida on Google, and 1.35 million for Kimbo Slice when I just checked. People in general don’t care about mma technical wizardry. They like emotional plots and brawls. That’s why Jerry Springer was so popular! Stupid idiots having stupid arguments and crappy fighting! “As real as it gets” applies to those fights even more than to ufc matches.

  • neijia says:

    Also, check out the Google Trends graph comparing Kimbo Slice and Brock Lesnar. Basically, Slice is as big a start already. http://www.google.com/trends?q=brock+lesnar%2C+kimbo+slice&ctab=0&geo=all&date=all&sort=0

  • BigDave says:

    I hate Kimbo thats no secret, He will never be a mma fighter and he will just be used for ppv buy from morons that think he is cool I’ll probably order a ppv that he is on because i’ll need to take a piss break and a 30 second kimbo loss should give me enough time for that. But I think he is a 1 and done as far as the ufc goes.

  • Niv says:

    The bottom line here, is the bottom line. Kimbo will be propped up as far as the UFC can take him. They’ll hype him just as they did with Lesnar and people will pay to see him fight.

    Personally I think he’s a lousy mma fighter, but he seems like a very likeable person, so I wish him well.

    Lesnar is a big tough dude on the other hand, but I can’t say he’s much of a martial artist either, he uses his God given tools to his benefit, but aside from wrestling he’s showed very little skill in the octagon either and the UFC has more than enough people convinced he’s invincible.

    I’ll keep saying this till proven wrong, if the UFC can get Kimbo a couple of back to back wins he’ll get a title shot, you can take that to the bank!

  • Dr.Stoppage says:

    I’ll add it to every Kimbo induced article that 5oz offers up.
    Kimbo will win at the UFC-BBQ PPV.

  • edub says:

    Niv…”but aside from wrestling he’s showed very little skill in the octagon either and the UFC has more than enough people convinced he’s invincible.”

    U mean aside from him dropping both Couture and Herring, and him spending about 4 straight minutes on the mat with Mir without being in any trouble submission wise.

  • edub says:

    metalmulisha: That’s funny you mentioned Penn because when Kimbo was in EliteXC that’s the exact example Dana used when taking a cheap shot at Kimbo. Now Dana thinks Kimbo is the toughest guy at the barbecue.

    yep thats what i was thinking when i said it.

  • Austin says:

    I think all true kimbo fans should cut their hair like him so we know who they are.

  • Niv says:

    edub…”U mean aside from him dropping both Couture and Herring, and him spending about 4 straight minutes on the mat with Mir without being in any trouble submission wise.”

    Yeah, 47 year old Couture who had a year and half layoff and is a natural LHW, Herring who has been a has been for almost five years already, and Mir who really isn’t the threat he used to be, yeah that’s the one.

    Mir was without a doubt his biggest win right now, but you can’t come out and say Lesnar represents the pinnacle in martial arts can you? I think my assessment of him using his natural gifts and his wrestling is bang on.

    I also don’t think Carwin is going to be a huge test either as he has one notable win and that was over Gonzaga who was schooling him. Carwin has the big punchers chance without a doubt, but he’ s being served up to Lesnar to help build his hype.

  • 27jride says:

    I also don’t think Carwin is going to be a huge test either as he has one notable win and that was over Gonzaga who was schooling him. Carwin has the big punchers chance without a doubt, but he’ s being served up to Lesnar to help build his hype.

    RIGHT ON with this assessment! I don’t think any of the higher-ups in MMA really believe Carwin has anything other than a puncher’s chance in this fight (as much as I would LOVE to see Carwin kick his ass) he’s just the biggest guy they could find so they are hyping him up and throwing him to the wolves. I take nothing away from Shane for his win over Gonzaga but had he not clipped him when he did, I doubt that fight would have gone on a hell of a lot longer. I’m totally rooting for him but not expecting much unfortunately.

  • MMApride19 says:

    Niv: edub…”U mean aside from him dropping both Couture and Herring, and him spending about 4 straight minutes on the mat with Mir without being in any trouble submission wise.”Yeah, 47 year old Couture who had a year and half layoff and is a natural LHW, Herring who has been a has been for almost five years already, and Mir who really isn’t the threat he used to be, yeah that’s the one.Mir was without a doubt his biggest win right now, but you can’t come out and say Lesnar represents the pinnacle in martial arts can you? I think my assessment of him using his natural gifts and his wrestling is bang on.I also don’t think Carwin is going to be a huge test either as he has one notable win and that was over Gonzaga who was schooling him. Carwin has the big punchers chance without a doubt, but he’ s being served up to Lesnar to help build his hype.

    Im sorry.. one thing that really annoys me is when people make excuses for fighters losing. And make excuses for why somebody won…

    You have just made excuses for 3 very credible fighters there… 3 fighters that are big names in MMA and that have each been around for a very long time, and have had legendary fights. 3 very experienced fighters… Randy may be old… be he has proved he still has the ability to compete. Whats your point? Yeh he may not be as good as he used to be, because of age. But he hasnt completely lost it… He is still competitive at the top level. And Mir.. How can you make an excuse like that against Mir man? He is definetly a top HW in MMA. Without a doubt. Im not really a fan, but you cannot deny he is a very good fighter. And Heath Herring.. Dude… this guy has been around for years, and has NEVER really been considered as THE BEST, but always considered as a top contender. He has fought all the best fighters in the world really, and has been competitive with them.

    Really the main point is… for a complete newcomer to MMA, with little to no MMA experience or fighting experience, to take out three BIG names in the sport, and 3 extremely credible names, is actually quite impressive in my books. I no he had a considerable size advantage, but isnt that what the HW division is about..? But a high level of skill and heart is still needed to compete at that level.

    Seriously, im not even a fan of Lesnar. But you cant discredit what he has done. Yes, he didnt deserve it. BUT, the UFC is a business, and you cant argue they have played the perfect card throwing Lesnar straight into the mix.

  • Niv says:

    MMApride19, with all due respect I stand by every word I said. Those aren’t excuses but facts, just as the fact that Couture is a legend and can still compete, Herring fought everybody and deserves respect for his achievements and Mir as well.

    But not one of these guys is top tier anymore, and Couture is a LHW and way past his prime.

    Do you believe Dana White threw Lesnar in with Mir his first fight expecting Mir to beat him? This was a near disaster for the UFC as they picked a guy with a good name who they knew was not what he used to be, and he pulled off an upset.

    Lesnar has been given hand picked opponents that he should have beaten, and he did. I’m just stating what is obvious here, and now he’s up against Carwin to further the hype.

    Lesnar has shown no signs of being a well rounded martial artist and I stand by that assessment as well.

    Is he a beast, does he deserve credit for doing what he’s done so far with no experience, hell yeah!

    I concede he’s done well for a new comer, but he’s miles away in my opinion from being the best HW in the world.

  • MM izzle my Nizzle says:

    Honestly has the UFC paid you money!? Stop writing articles on a guy who doesn’t deserve to be in professional MMA. The UFC said we wont give him a spot unless he earns it…they lied. He lost his first fight on the show and yet he is going to fight in the UFC. What a joke. I don’t hate Kimbo or the UFC, I hate the public for even giving this guy a mention or the slightest bit of interest. Can you not see what this shit is going to do to MMA. A MMA event can be carried by a guy who doesn’t even belong in the event or at the top level. So MMA is just entertainment now. Just imagine this in any other sport. Say if in basketball a guy got drafted because he was a famous u tube guy but couldn’t really play or in the olympics the 100 meters was run by guy that couldn’t run under 11 sec’s but was “really popular”and have a funny beard. If you want to see guys that are not at the top level, go ahead and watch back yard brawls. But the MMA I want to see is the best guys competing and not some dude who is there because he has a gold teeth and brill cream in his [email protected] UP beard.

  • mu_shin says:

    Not withstanding the fact that this thread was about Kimbo, when someone makes a comment like “Lesnar has been given hand picked opponents that he should have beaten, and he did”, the implication is that there are a host of other fighters out there standing in line who would be capable of beating him, but they are not being given the opportunity for some unstated possibly nefarious reasons. I simply don’t see that as being supportable by any objective appraisal of the talent available.

    Lesnar might not be the purist’s champion, and he might not deliver the end-all-and-be-all of MMA technique, but he is the UFC heavyweight champion, and I believe he will inhabit that pinnacle for some time to come. I’ve written in other posts that Shane Carwin has a legitimate chance to unseat Brock, and personally I think it is much more than the proverbial “puncher’s chance”, but honestly I will be surprised if Carwin supplants Lesnar as UFC heavyweight champion. I expect a very physical, grueling match, and hope it goes deep into the later rounds, but Brock works incredibly hard at conditioning and learning all aspects of the MMA game, and I see him outlasting an extremely game Shane Carwin.

    I believe there is one MMA fighter who has all the skills at the present time to present Brock Lesnar with a challenge that puts Lesnar at a serious disadvantage, and the is Fedor Emelianenko. We all know that fight will not happen unless/until serious business considerations are surmounted, but the original point remains: there are very few, if any, current MMA heavyweights that present any kind of serious technical and/or athletic challenge to Lesnar, and to imply there is some kind of back room conspiracy to deny deserving fighters a shot at the UFC champion is not supported by what I see as the facts.

    Viewing this purely in terms of the sporting aspects, and not in terms of personality, or who “deserves” it, or who has better technique, or who may have most recently been affiliated with a form of scripted entertainment, to imply that Lesnar is “miles away from the best HW in the world” does not objectively describe what I’m seeing in the real MMA world. I see very few fighters between Brock and that distinction, and I would welcome more reasoned debate as to who those fighters might be that occupy the miles between Lesnar and the best in the world.

  • elkymbo says:

    Brock vs Kimbo for the heavyweight title……..no wait lets make it a three way dance and chuck Fedor in for a laugh. There, everyone happy?

  • Niv says:

    mu_shin “Not withstanding the fact that this thread was about Kimbo, when someone makes a comment like “Lesnar has been given hand picked opponents that he should have beaten, and he did”, the implication is that there are a host of other fighters out there standing in line who would be capable of beating him, but they are not being given the opportunity for some unstated possibly nefarious reasons. I simply don’t see that as being supportable by any objective appraisal of the talent available.”

    First of all my initial comment was actually about Kimbo and Brock was mentioned as an example, now this things taken on a life of its own.

    Fair enough, and I know I’m going to eat some of my words, but here goes. When stating that Brock was given hand picked opponents that simply implies who they felt he’d match up best with to give him some wins, and over name opponents. We know the names and Mir and Herring were top notch fighters but way past their primes. Mir probably is more talented and accomplished between the two but really was expected to lose as was Herring. At the time they brought him in they could have set up a fight with say Big Nog who I think is the biggest threat to Brock in the UFC today, but they chose a guy they openly have stated is a head case and lacks confidence at times.

    Then Couture comes back after being tied up in court for a year and a half trying to fight Fedor, Zuffa sees a golden opportunity and gives Brock a fight with Couture. This is knowing that rust, age and size are all against the legend. That in a nutshell is hand picked in hopes of getting things your way.

    Here’s where I eat my words there aren’t many match-ups right now that threaten Brock within the UFC, Big Nog, Dos Santos, Gonzaga are probably the best bets right now with Big Nog being the only real plausible one today. However in sheer talent and martial arts ability I don’t think Brock compares to Big Nog, I think there’s a huge difference there. As for Carwin, personally I hope I’m proven wrong but I don’t think he’ll make it out of the first round, he was being tossed around by Gonzaga like a pinata before he landed the one big punch. I think Lesnar tosses him like a salad and crushes him in no time. I’ll gladly eat my words on that one as well, but I don’t think Carwin represents anything more than a big body.

    As far as being miles away from being the best HW in the world here’s what I mean by that. Obviously he is an extremely large, physically gifted man, who has a great wrestling background which he uses to his advantage. I cannot say he isn’t a formidable opponent for anyone, but I just don’t think he has the skills or the time to develop those skills to consider him that elite fighter like Fedor Emelianenko, or even Josh Barnett or Andrei Arlovski. Throw in Big Nog in that grouping and just look at the ability and skill sets before you and there is a huge discrepancy between the current UFC HW champ and those fighters.

    This is a very unique situation here when you look at champions in other divisions, and they are clearly heads above the rest in talent and ability when looking at BJ Penn, GSP and Spider Silva as examples. They have all cleaned ou their divisions, but they are more than just the most physically gifted fighter in their divisions, they clearly out class the competition, Lesnar doesn’t do that.

    Sorry if this isn’t the most coherent answer but I’m writing this while on break at work and it’s 3 am.

    Take care

  • edub says:

    “Mir who really isn’t the threat he used to be, yeah that’s the one.”

    Mir is better right now than he has been in his entire career. Better Jits, Better striking; Better conditioning.

  • mu_shin says:

    Niv: Thanks for the reasoned, well presented thoughts. Appreciate the discourse.

    I guess I could concede the point that the powers that be did not want to set Brock up to fail, but I think I still have some issues with the idea that fighters like MIr and Couture were hand picked to lose. Really, it reads like a win-win for the UFC, as Lesnar wins and establishes himself as a legit contender, or MIr beats Brock in the first fight, and sets up the whole interim championship scenario. Had Randy been more successful against Brock, think of the marketing gold the UFC could have mined there, Captain America beats the Beast…

    Having watched Nogueira perform so well against Randy, I do think your point is well taken, Big Nog is highly skilled, a defininte threat at heavyweight, and among the most experienced fighters active in the sport. As to whether Nogueira could overcome Lesnar, I tend to doubt it, while acknowledging the point that from a martial arts perspective, his skills are more well rounded, his BJJ is highly developed, and his striking game is also strong. I just think we might have to accept the fact that while Brock may not have the most well rounded technical skills, the wrestling base he does have, coupled with his athletic prowess and physical gifts, gives him an advantage in the ring that will be tough for anyone to surmount.

    Would really enjoy seeing Carwin put some leather to Brock’s head, and see where that leads, see if Brock can take it as well as dish it out. Looking forward to a competitive match, and again, thanks for discussing this in such an open minded manner.

  • Niv says:

    mu_shin I’m always up for a good debate, and I appreciate your comments and thoughts as well.

    I have very little time for those who like to name call and belittle each other over shared opinions, personally I find it cowardly so I try to avoid those types of debates.

    Either way I have to concede as much as I’m not a fan of Lesnar the man is a very impressive athlete and is obviously a dangerous guy in the octagon/ring. And as stated before I really hope I’m wrong about Carwin, at the very least I hope it turns into a war where he aquits himself well.

    Take care

  • edub says:

    Mu_shin “Captain America beats the Beast…”

    And sets up super fight to lure in Fedor. They know that the fight wouldve been gold, and if Randy won they could’ve had a legitimat big fight to bring in Fedor with. because if Fedor beats Couture the UFC still has the abylity to spin it as Fedor beat up an old man he still needs to go up against our younger(bigger) HWs.

    The UFC still has some Power.

    If he beats Brock he’s clearly better than the entire HW divisionof the UFC. Already beat Nog twice and I think we can all agree on he would beat Mir.

    The UFC would have absolutely no bargaining power since they can’t afford Brock to lose.

    I think Brock was put in with Couture to lose.

  • Niv says:

    edub _ “I think Brock was put in with Couture to lose.”

    Interesting perspective, but I have to disagree on that one. Attracting Fedor is a huge issue but that is one that makes more sense for the well versed mma fan.

    The UFC brought Lesnar in knowing full well what a high profile former WWE superstar helps bring to the table. The hardcore mma fan can only take this sport so far, there is a real need to expand the market and bring in more mainstream attention to mma. Randy Couture is a legend in mma circles, I dare say he’s virtually unknown as is Fedor outside of this circle.

    That’s what Brock was brought in for, that’s what he’s helping achieve, Dana and Zuffa know that full well, therefore I can’t possibly see how Couture was brought in to beat Lesnar.

  • edub says:

    I just think the win over Brock would ve kept the casual fan in love with Couture. I know hes not the biggest star in the world, but Couture is definately known outside of hardcore mma circles. I would say hes definately known a lot more than Fedor, and near the satatus of Liddell.

    Good talk.

  • Niv says:

    Edub I agree, good talk. I find this site one of the best to read as most comments don’t get too far out of hand, and there’s a pretty knowledgeable group here.

    Take care

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