The fix is in! The fix is in! I think it is funny how people are so willing to believe that the Ken Shamrock and Kimbo Slice fight was fixed. Joe Rogan, when discussing the fight with Brendan Schaub, thought a lot of looked strange and it did, but even he said if it was a work then Slice went off the book when he blasted Shamrock.
It is difficult to see Shamrock agreeing to lose by Kimbo hitting him with a huge right hand. Were the other options all groin shots? I get it if Shamrock had been submitted by Kimbo, then it would look suspicious. However, the one thing Kimbo has always done well is knockout people when he hits them. His problem was being able to actually hit people at the higher levels.
Old and slow was the tempo
You know what is easy to hit? A fifty-one year old fighter who had lost nine other fights via KO/TKO coming into this fight. Let us be clear right now – Shamrock is old.
If they made a movie about Shamrock right now they would have to age Mickey Rourke to play him. This is not a case of Shamrock coming into the sport late like a Randy Couture. No, Shamrock was there in the beginning.
He was at the first Pancrase in Japan and then a few months later he fought in UFC 1. When it comes to MMA, Shamrock is like the Grandmaster Melle Mel of it. He is as old school as it gets in the sport with a career that now spans twenty-two years.
Also, let us not forget that besides the 43 MMA fights he had coming into this fight, Shamrock also spent many years in the WWE as a professional wrestler. Over the twenty-two years in the sport and professional wrestling Shamrock has worn his body down.
Is it so hard for people to believe that at fifty-one Shamrock is a shadow of himself? Apparently they would rather think that it was work rather than an old fighter who cannot fight at a high level anymore. This was his first fight in five years and he was not that good then.
Rear-Naked-Chokes are not leg-locks
Shamrock is still a name but he has not been elite in over a decade, and there is nothing wrong with that. It is just life. Fighters do not fight the same in their forties or fifties if they are fighting at all.
One big element for many people was Shamrock’s inability to finish the choke, and it was about him not finishing versus Kimbo defending it. It is difficult for them to understand how a submission specialist could not submit Kimbo.
While Shamrock is a submission specialist he only has three RNC wins in his career and they all came in 1994. So, he has not submitted someone via a RNC in over twenty years. Is it really hard to believe that Shamrock is not that good at RNC’s? Is it hard to believe that he gassed his arms out in that short time? He is fifty-one years old and did not have that good of cardio over his last few fights.
It was part WWE, part Circus and part MMA
A big part of the talk is aided by Shamrock’s entrance complete with Road Warrior Animal and apparently every family member he could find. It was a spectacle but that was what this fight was all about. It was an echo back to Pride and Strikeforce and it worked.
You have to give Scott Coker a lot of credit with what he has done with Bellator. It is a Monday as I finish this up. We are coming off an amazing performance by the UFC’s strawweight champion Joanna Jedrzejzcyk on Saturday, and people are still talking about Kimbo and Shamrock.
It is unlikely that Bellator overtakes the UFC but they are going to gain on them with Coker running the show. It also helps that Viacom has the funds to make them competitive when signing fighters.
You couple that with the negative impact of the Reebok deal and you can see where they will start taking some of the better talent. The top fighters will always want to get into the UFC to see if they are the best but the other fighters will start looking at Bellator.
Right now the future seems much brighter for Bellator than it did before Coker came aboard. That is part of the reason that I cannot see them being involved in a work. If they were in a desperate situation then it might make more sense.
Risk versus Reward
I also have struggled to come up with a gain for Bellator by Kimbo winning. He is forty-one years old and to say he is washed up as a mixed-martial-artist would be implying that he was really one to begin with. During his career he has been a spectacle with a big punch but rarely able to land it.
If just does not make any sense for Bellator to care about who won the fight. From their perspective it was all about this one fight and getting eyes on their product. That is why they put Patricio Pitbull, Daniel Straus and Michael Chandler on the card. That is why they used it to sell next week’s card for Bellator 139.
The whole point of Kimbo versus Shamrock was to get you to tune in. It was never about the future for either of them in Bellator. A win or a loss does not change their name values. If Bellator puts on Royce Gracie versus Ken Shamrock III, do you think anyone cares that Shamrock just lost? No, they will tune in to see the spectacle.
Kimbo versus Shamrock was not a work – but it did work for Bellator.
image via BellatorMMA
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