Last night we bore witness to an official phenomenon in mixed martial arts. His name is Kimbo Slice. And no, I’m not talking about his skill set in the cage. I’m talking about his personality, his name, his charisma, his appearance, his demeanor in the cage and his prior history of internet street fight. Because of those factors the guy sells tickets. And probably some Showtime subscriptions to be quite honest. In the future, he’ll sell pay per views for EliteXC and he’ll sell out even more arenas. If you don’t believe that then you didn’t see or hear what went down at the BankUnited Center in Miami, Florida last night.
It was absolutely deafening over the television as the crowd chanted Kimbo’s name during the referee’s instructions. People tried to tell me before the fight that Kimbo Slice would not draw in Miami. Last night was a testament to his drawing power. Here on the site we had people coming in the chat room who didn’t know a thing about MMA. But they damn sure knew who Kimbo Slice was.
As for the fight itself? It couldn’t have gone better for Kimbo or EliteXC. He demolished Tank Abbott with a quickness. Tank looked surprised at how hard Kimbo was hitting him. And man can that guy throw some f’n leather. He has serious power, folks, the kind of power that makes him dangerous against any heavyweight fighter and that includes the big boys in the UFC.
I’m not saying that Kimbo would beat any of those guys right now so don’t go thinking I’m an idiot. If you made me pick Kimbo vs. any top ten fighter in the world right this moment, I would go with the top ten fighter every time. But his power gives him a chance in any fight against any fighter in the world. The guy is going to destroy some people’s faces in brutal fashion during his tenure in MMA. Believe that.
On top of that, he’s creating a mystique about himself in the eyes of the casual fan. The hardcore sees Kimbo for what he is. He’s a guy with a lot of potential, great trainers, tons of power, and he seems dedicated to the sport. Past that, there’s not much that hardcores know about him. In two pro fights and one exhibition bout, Kimbo Slice hasn’t even been in the cage for a whole five minute round so it’s still impossible to completely evaluate him. For the casual fan, though, Kimbo has beaten three opponents in a row now in under five minutes total time and that creates this mystique that he’s running through guys to people who haven’t seen his MMA fights yet. The next time Kimbo fights the event will be even bigger than it was last night.
EliteXC and Gary Shaw better do everything they can to keep Kimbo Slice with EliteXC. Kimbo is helping them build their brand right now and they are riding the wave of his popularity. If another promotion comes along and nabs Kimbo away from EliteXC it would be very bad news for them. It would be in their best interest to keep Kimbo Slice with the company. Last night should have struck that point home with EliteXC. Kimbo Slice is a phenomenon.
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