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Is Kimbo Slice vs. Ken Shamrock Worth It?

First things first. Kimbo Slice vs. Ken Shamrock is a marketable matchup. It’s one that I’m sure will draw ratings. Shamrock has been around the game for a very long time, can hype a fight, and has name recognition from his time in the UFC, WWE, and his run on TUF 3. Kimbo is Kimbo. We’ve seen what kind of attention he draws and what kind of drawing power he has. This has all been stated in the past. It’s a fight that will get eyeballs on CBS, EliteXC, and have people tuning in.

That being said, EliteXC is getting as close to scripting fights as possible in MMA without actually determining the outcomes. Say what you will about the UFC, at least they give us legitimate fights where the best fighters on their roster fight one another and they let the chips fall where they may. It may be better off for one of their fighters to win over another but they let the fighters decide what the outcome is and not the matchmaking.

With EliteXC it’s the complete opposite. Going into the fight we already know who’s going to win. And it shouldn’t be that way. Part of the allure to MMA is that the sport is so unpredictable. But nine times out of ten, Slice dominates Shamrock. There’s no fun in that. Are we supposed to legitimately think that Shamrock has a chance in hell to win this fight? That it’s a competitive fight? Anyone with half a brain knows that Shamrock will get knocked out within the first couple of minutes. The guy hasn’t won a fight since he beat a washed up Kimo back in 2004 and his chin has turned into absolute glass over the past few years. Sure, the guy knows his submission game and there’s a small chance he might catch Slice in something but Shamrock is following the path of Tank Abbott as just another guy to throw in the cage against Slice so Kimbo can knock his block off. If “Buzz” Berry can do it then Kimbo certainly can. EliteXC looks second rate as it is. This matchup only helps solidify that fact.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I have nothing but love for Kimbo Slice. I’ve been a Kimbo Slice supporter since the beginning. I think his aura, his charisma, and his fighting style are good for the sport. His story is one that appeals to a lot of different types of people and he seems to be taking the sport very seriously. That being said, you don’t know if his next fight is going to be against a legitimate opponent like Brett Rogers or if it’s going to be against Doink The Clown. I mean honestly, the circus surrounding Kimbo’s future opponents has become ridiculous. Who’s next? Tommy Morrison?

Sooner or later Slice is going to have to be tested. But because EliteXC has zero stars past Slice and to a lesser extent Gina Carano, it forces them to continue to protect Kimbo because should he lose then they have no drawing power. Carano can’t carry a show by herself and the reason people will tune in on October 4 is almost solely because of Slice. It’s a sad state of affairs because Slice deserves better. He was being built up the proper way. First it was the debacle agaisnt Bo Cantrell, then Tank Abbott, a relative can. Then it was James Thompson, a more legitimate fighter who really tested Kimbo. And now I’m thinking: “Hey, maybe they’ll actually put him in against Rogers and let the chips fall.” But no, they disappoint me with Shamrock. And after he beats Shamrock I’m sure they’ll pull Don Frye or Dan Severn out of the woodworks. Or would Dan Severn be too risky?

My hope is that EliteXC runs into a situation where the undercard fights are great and the sport itself is elevated because people tune in to see Kimbo and also happen to see some great MMA fights along the way. Paul Daley vs. Jake Shields is one of those fights that could steal the show and it would be great if a ton of people saw it because that is a true MMA fight with two elite fighters vying for a title shot. Maybe that’s EliteXC’s plan. But I have a feeling that it isn’t.

20 COMMENTS
  • MJC_123 says:

    Its Kimbo’s 4th Pro fight, I don’t see what the problem is…Okay he is being marketed as the next big thing, BUT he clearly has to put the mileage within the cage.

    Shamrock is on the back of some horrible losses admittedly BUT factor out TITO an athelete way beyond Kimbo’s abilites and I don’t see the problem….Shamrock has lost of late to people who are on the face of it as good as what Slice has shown.

    This is a good match-up for Kimbo, providing Ken comes “game ready”, trains hard and is willing to have one final hurrah….I for one do not think its a foregone conclusion….

    The fact is Slice is not and could never be as good as everyone thinks he is/wants him to be after only 3 pro bouts….Beating Shamrock will do major ratings and give him another legened under his belt.

    I mean look at Lesnar, similar amount of fights, training for the same time and use to the high profile scenario….my money is Kimbo doesn’t even last a round with Lesnar.

    You play with the cards you have….Slice vs Shamroc makes perfect sense and also is worth it.

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  • Jason G says:

    Yeah Dan Severn would probably beat him. You gotta think though that he’s 3-0 and also the company’s sole drawing power for big ratings. EliteXc knows their pissing off the hardcore fans but they don’t have much choice if they plan to survive. They could have Kimbo fight some guy nobody’s heard of instead that has a similar record like normal up and coming fighters do, but people would still be upset and it would hurt the ratings. So basically stop complaining and rejoice that we get free fights on tv.

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  • Venom says:

    “Are we supposed to legitimately think that Shamrock has a chance in hell to win this fight?”

    Isn’t this EXACTLY what was said about James Thompson? And that turned out to be a decent fight! Maybe not the most skillful fight ever, but an entertaining one, none the less.

    Let’s give Shamrock a chance, shall we? The old man might pull something out of his ass and get a fluke submission on the ground, a la Frank Mir on Brock. And even if he doesn’t, I’m sure there’s plenty of Shamrock haters out there that wanna see Ken get his head knocked off! :-)

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  • aaronb says:

    I have to respectfully disagree with you here Adam. Everyone on the roster fights the toughest fights each other except Kimbo up to this point. The guy only has 3 pro fights. The UFC isn’t putting Brock Lesnar against Big Nog yet are they? Bisping hasn’t been fed to Anderson Silva yet has he? ALL promotions build up guys to maximize their TV Q. I love the UFC and watch almost all of their shows. But this UFC double standard is lame as hell. Everyone wants to rush and defend every UFC move like god himself is moving the chess pieces. Yet EXC,Dream,Affliction or Whomever schedules 1 fight out of an 8 card fight with a “gimme” Matchup. And they are the WWE and the end of MMA as we know it from here on. Kimbo v Shamrock is no worse than Silva v Irvin or Hughes v Gracie. The only difference is that it isnt the UFC putting on the show.

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  • Franklin says:

    @aaronb – Please, the UFC has thrown *MUCH* tougher competition at both Bisping and Lesnar than EliteXC has even thought about giving Kimbo.

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  • Jason G says:

    Franklin, how many UFC fighters have 3 professional fights or less? The only one that comes to mind is Brock Lesnar and he’s obviously on a different level right now. 99.9% of all fighters aren’t ready to compete against world class competition until they’ve had more fights. Most UFC rookies have 7-10 fights and even then they fight lower ranked guys at first.

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  • madmaxman says:

    Slice is a joke. Period. ANY of the top 10 UFC Heavyweights would destroy him. Had it not been for Thompsons gory ear, and Mirgliottas incompetence, he would already have lost, and be fading into obscurity. Yeah, he’ll probably KO shamrock quickly, but it only goes to show once again he (Slice) cant beat ANYONE thats a competent fighter. Bring on Rogers, If slice beats him, then he becomes legit. Look at Lesnar, he’s not being coddled or protected, and he beat the holy crap out of herring, and before he got caught, did the same to Mir.(And I dont even like Lesnar and think he’s an A-hole).

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  • @Jason G: I will not simply reojoice that we get ‘free fights on tv’.

    There are tons of viewers and even members of the media that are going to be introduced to MMA via these fights on CBS. I think this Kimbo circus act really threatens the legitimacy of the sport with the masses and the masses are what we need to take this sport to the next level.

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  • alkatraz says:

    Finally some fans that understand i was begining to think everyone out there was just ignorant.Jason G i was looking up other great fighters and i couldn’t find many who even fought guys over a 500 wining pct. in their fist 4 fights.let alone a gut with 40 fights.so i agree w/ u.Is kimbo any different.is it his fault that everyone wants to see him fight?is it his fault the whole mma world is jealous of him and his fame.he is just a man unlike any of us who is doing what his boss and people tell him.his day will come and just enjoy it for what its worth. \hardcore fans (whatever that means)need to lighten up and just understand that elite is just tring to survive and make it.all u hard core fans sure are not keeping them afloat.so they have a marketing tool(kimbo)and have to milk it to stay afloat.i don’t if u r hardcore mma fans or just ufc fans.their are other good fight that xc puts on.but i hear all u people hoping the company fails and kimbo fails.to many people on these blogs are pretty negative and must have short comings in their own lives to wish such bad on an individual and a company.be a fan of the sport and help it suceed and not fail.your not even paying to see the fight just tune in and give xc a chance.they r trying they have some good fights and fighters.good luck to them and stop the negativity.

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  • 209 says:

    Stop putting K. Fergi as the main event!!! That’s all I ask!!! Go ahead and place it at maybe #3 of the night…. call it th sideshow fight of the night or something… Why the hell is it the Main event?

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  • tallsforeverybody says:

    what exactly is Kimbo’s fighting style??? It’s certainly not MMA.

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  • Bill Lumberg says:

    Fergi ——lol,lol,lol-forever lives fergi and j-fed are carrying on the tradition j-fed’s dad created- fixed fights, try and destroy a sport by promoting a circus instead of the sport itself. Do they really think buillding Fergi this way is going to lead to great PPV sales?

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  • Levi M says:

    WOW! Am I the only one that thinks the EliteXC made a HUGE mistake here. I truly believe that a 44yr old Ken Shamrock is light tears ahead of Kimbo. There is no way that Kimbo stands a chance against Ken. I HATE Ken Shamrock…I think the guy is a tard, but he will go into this with a gameplan to stay away from Kimbos homerun punches and get him against the cage to set up a take down, we all saw what happens to Kimbo when that happens. If James Thompson could do this, for god sakes an old, blind KenShamrock could pull it off! And, from the ground Ken will hit hard…alot harder than James’ pitty patters!

    I am picking Ken Shamrock to shock Adam Morgan, blah blah blah, and win the battle of the tards in October. TKO Round 1!

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  • matt says:

    What pisses me off isn’t that they aren’t using Rogers, it’s that the past 2 big HW match ups EXC has given us (Silva/Eilers, Kimbo/Shamrock) are farces. You know who is going to win. Eilers didn’t stand a chance and neither does Shamrock. You have available talent you can use (Herman/Rogers/Murphy) that are compelling matchups. If Silva is a top 10 (and I think he can be if tested) then make the HW title match against Rogers. If Kimbo is your star and as bad a man as you market him to be, then have him face a legit fighter, not someone who doesn’t know when to retire. Kimbo/Murphy or Kimbo/Herman would be amazing fights and if Herman wins, you have a legit new star and Kimbo’s drawing power only slightly dwindles. If Kimbo loses to Ken, you’re SOL.

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  • 209 says:

    If Ken can pull it off… Knee Baror heel hook in the 2nd round.

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  • Jason G says:

    I don’t think overall people watching mma for the first time and seeing Kimbo is going to hurt the legitimacy of mma. If they’re observant, they’ll notice that Kimbo’s fight isn’t nearly as technical as the other fights on the main card but that’s about it. I’d be more worried if they saw some of the crap Nick Diaz and KJ Noons do after fights. Most people aren’t going to notice and just see an exciting knockout and be pleased. It doesn’t matter if they think he’s the best as long as the continue to watch in the future. When they watch more they’ll become informed. The media used to write horrible articles about mma calling it “ultimate fighting” and not checking their facts but as general knowledge increased, the articles got better.

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  • OCD says:

    Funny thing about this fight is that shows how stupid Ken is, and how his management doesn’t give a shit about his legacy.

    Beat Kimbo = he should, he has more experience and of course he is the “World’s Most Dangerous Man.”

    Lose to Kimbo = he should, he’s lost his last five fights and is clearly not the fighter of old and Kimbo is a “beast.”

    Shamcock can’t win either way. He looked HORRIBLE in his last fight. And frankly that is what people are going to remember about this fight. He will be one step above Tank Abbott, and that’s about it. He should be called “Sham-mock” because this is all a sham and he’s mocking his former self.

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  • aaronb says:

    RE: EXC recent heavyweight matchups:

    I can’t really fault EXC for their recent heavy weight matchups. What they are doing is just good business. Before their last show they didn’t even have a crowned champ. The idea behind a good promotion is building up to the main fights. Silva,Hermann,Kimbo,Rogers all winning is their attempt to build momentum towards big HW fights. No promotion with any long term plan just throws their best 4 fighters into a card and lets them fight right out of the gate. It would be beyond stupid. The better way (the way they are doing it), is to put each guy on cards facing lesser opponents. Let these guys build their momentum by looking as impressive as possible. Then book them against each other when interest is at it’s peak. UFC is doing this with their Lesnar/Valsquez/Carwin trio. EXC is doing it with their top guys as well.

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  • jay says:

    kimbo has to start somewhere. anyway if anyone here has any idea of how shit is marketed. u have to build it up. hes obviousally a great guy at standing and trading punches with if u can even handle it! hes been in the gym latley workin on his ground game. im sure he will come away with a win.but will shamrock give him a chance to show it this weekend! we can only wait and see~! people drink your hatter-aid! be jealous. this guy is gonna knock some fuckin teeth out in his day. im happy to be around to see some real fights!

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  • jon says:

    WOW… nice column on kimbo u stupid idiot… LMAO KIMBO SUCKS

    Agree or Disagree: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

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