Ever since Kimbo Slice debuted last June, people have clamored for him to face what they perceive as “real” competition instead of former boxers and washed up MMA fighters from the dark ages of the sport. Well, apparently there’s a method to the madness according to a recent interview with Bas Rutten over at PunchDrunkGamer.com:
Well his first fight only lasted a little over a minute and then his second fight against Bo Cantrell wasn’t really a fight because it only lasted 19 seconds. So we really didn’t learn very much from those two fights and I want him to fight a tough guy. Tank is definitely a tough guy and maybe he’s going to want people to know that he is still around and he will train hard for this fight. If he doesn’t train hard he’s going to be in a lot of trouble. I want Kimbo’s opponent to make this fight longer than the previous two. I shouldn’t say it but I want him to get hit but not too hard [laughs].
If he sticks with the game plan then we will get a better idea of where he is at. We need to get him some opponents that are going to put up resistance. We will take it from there and then build him up to better opponents. Some people want to rush it and have him fight Fedor but there is too big of a difference in experience. I mean Fedor has something like 24 fights and then all of his Sambo matches. Right now I just need to get him used to fighting in the cage. Kimbo has four fights this year and if he stays injury free and keeps progressing, then I have no problem putting him up against a top 10 fighter.
Bas makes an excellent point. What’s the point in throwing Kimbo to the wolves? He’s going to fight better competition each time out. These fights that he’s taking right now are just to get his feet wet and get used to fighting in a mixed martial arts atmosphere. It’s understandable that people make jokes about Tank Abbott as “legitimate competition.” That clearly doesn’t matter to Bas and it shouldn’t. His job is to ease Kimbo into the sport and build him up fight by fight, not book him against Top 20 guys right away. Give it time and eventually Kimbo will be tested by good fighters. You just can’t expect him to go full bore right out of the gates.
Kimbo is going to win some and Kimbo is going to lose some just like every mixed martial artist does. Bas is just trying to make sure that he’s winning in the beginning and getting the experience needed in order to make Kimbo a successful fighter. What’s so wrong with that?