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Tim Sylvia, “five time UFC champion”

There was an interview with Tim Sylvia in this week’s CiN Weekly, a local newspaper dedicated to the “hip things” going on around the local area. Well, UFC 77 happens to be one of those events if you haven’t been paying attention, so there’s a big spread in there and this interview with Tim.

This question, in particular, raised an eyebrow:

Q: What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about you?

A: A lot of people just think I’m an a—hole or I’m mean because I’m 6-foot-8, 255 pounds, you know? When they first look at me, they think I’m scary, and then they get to know me and they say I’m a nice guy, I’m a gentle giant. I give off a persona of being a badass. I think it’s because I’m a five-time UFC champ.

I thought to myself: How can he be a five time champion?

When I think of “five time champion,” I think of someone winning the title five times. He certainly hasn’t won the title five times. He has won the title twice. He beat Ricco Rodriguez at UFC 41 and he beat Andre Arlovski at UFC 59 to reclaim the title.

He has defended the title three times. He has defended against Gan McGee (man, that heavyweight division was so beast back then, eh?), Andrei Arlovski and Jeff Monson.

Little known UFC factoid: They count title defenses as “times” you’ve “won” the championship.

Say what? That is complete bullshit. They can’t be serious, right? Then Sam mentioned that the UFC markets Matt Hughes the same way. I’ve never thought about it before, but he’s right. They market Hughes as the “nine time UFC champion,” when in fact he’s only truly won the belt twice.

However, they billed Randy Couture as a “three time UFC heavyweight champion” because he legitimately won the title on three different occasions.

I guess I don’t really have a point here, other than this little know fact is complete and utter bullshit. Successful defenses should not count as having “won” the championship again, especially not against someone like Gan McGee.