As with any other landmark historical moment, I can remember where I was when received the email.
The subject line was to the point, “one scary dude”.
I opened the email and clicked on the attached youtube video. When it was over I got up from my chair, checked my backyard to make sure it was clear and then locked all the doors.
I then watched the video again to make sure it wasn’t my neighborhood, wasn’t my backyard and that I didn’t know anyone in the video. Seemed clear on all fronts, but I still kept the doors locked.
Who was this guy? What this an organized fight or just two guys who didn’t get along so well at a company BBQ? Is the other guy ok?
Well, his name is Kevin Ferguson but you can call him Kimbo Slice and it turns out there were rules to those early fights as well as a small purse to the winner. Legend has the rules listed as follows:
- This is not a mixed martial art or a street fight
- Only punching allowed (no elbows, knees, kicks)
- Stand up fighting only
- No holding or grappling with the opponent is allowed
- If someone is knocked down he has thirty seconds to get up and continue fighting
- Ways to win are KO, thirty second count out, and if the other guy quits
If you have watched Kimbo’s early semi-organized fights they do seem to follow the rules listed above.
So… why do we care?
Well, the rise of Kimbo represents more than just another scary dude who can fight and I’ve tried to capture some of the reasons why his story garners so much attention from MMA and non-MMA fans:
1. The American Dream- it has that “only in America” feel to it. That everyone can make it. You too can be a millionaire! It’s not Rocky, but you get the idea.
2. The power of the internet – where would Kevin Ferguson be without youtube? Answer: beating up lions in the circus. Never doubt the impressive might of a youtube video that catches on with the masses.
3. When street fighters get rich they do funny things. Mike Tyson anyone?
4. We want to see him win; we want to see him lose. If he keeps winning and actually becomes the heavyweight champion (not just one of several) it is a made for Hollywood story. If someone knocks him silly we get to see the scariest man on the planet get beat. Either way it is entertaining.
5. Kimbo shows us the amazing talent that exists in MMA. He’s big, he’s tough, he’s menacing, he can beat up a pit-bull, and… he’s looked pretty average against some B-level MMA opponents. The Kimbo’s of the world are what launched MMA. With MMA got to see everyday looking guys who were extensively trained in several martial arts disciplines beat guys who looked like they could squash you with one finger.
We watch the Kimbo Slice story for all of the above reasons and it will be interesting to see how it unfolds. Some have already written him off as a sideshow, others that have trained with him know that he is taking this very seriously.
Kimbo is the example of what MMA is out to prove– let’s see if he can learn the system and beat the game.
KIMBO SLICE TRIVIA
1. Kimbo was a bodyguard for an online porn company that was known for what website?
2. Kimbo has how many children?
3. How many of Kimbo’s children are named Kevin?
4. How did Kimbo come to be known with the last name Slice?
5. True or False : Kimbo was a star defensive player at the University of Miami
6. How much did Kimbo make for his first street fight?
7. Kimbo was homeless in what year?
8. True or False : Kimbo has 10 siblings
9. Which NFL team did Kimbo try out for?
10. True or False : Kimbo goes to church on Sundays with his family
1. The ever popular MILF Hunter
3. Two but several others have variations of Kevin
4. “Slice” was taken as his last name as a tribute to his fans, who coined the moniker after watching one of his street fights in which he caused a large gash to the left side of one of his opponent’s face. The gash was referred to as a “slice” and applied by many as Kimbo’s last name.
5. False. Kimbo was a standout linebacker at Palmetto High School. As an aside : Wikipedia shows that Kimbo was on academic scholarship at University of Miami but that has been disputed by Kimbo’s representatives.
9. Miami Dolphins
If you scored less than 3 right you might as well leave your doors unlocked and wait for Kimbo to surprise you one night. You have no idea who he is or what he is capable of doing to you.
If you scored 4-6 right you have watched some of his fights but you were drunk the entire time.
If you scored 7-9 right you are a real Kimbo fan, you know your stuff and you should ask yourself if that means there is something wrong with you
If you scored 10 you are Kevin Ferguson and should get back to the gym.