It's never pretty or easy to take a clear-eyed look at the trail of headline slime tailing behindthe MMA community. But given that the community revolves around violence, their bad apples apparently tend to shade toward the side of freaking rotten.
As such, consider this slideshow an example of public service in journalism. Remember when Bruce Wayne finds the bat cave and calmly stands up to let the bats fly around him? He was no longer afraid. He faced his fears. See what I'm saying, bro? This slideshow is the bat flock, or coven, or whatever they're called as a group. And you, the MMA stakeholder, are Bruce Wayne.
Without further ado, here are the 10 craziest tales of MMA that happened outside the cage. Some of these are kind of funny. Others are much, much less so. Humor calibrated accordingly. All of these stories happened to fighters during their fight careers and are a matter of public record (more or less).
Organ eaters need not apply.
Might as well start with the most recent one. And one of the craziest.
If you follow MMA closely or ever hang out in the MMA section of the Twitterverse, you'll be well aware of Lloyd Irvin. The Maryland jiu-jitsu coach has a long history of involvement in gut-wrenching sexual assault cases, including with his own students.
Just Tuesday, Brent Brookhouse at Bloody Elbow reported that Irvin's students are now leaving en masse. Now that's a noodle scratcher.
When you're talking iconography (and when am I not?!?!), only a few crazy MMA tales conjure as much intrigue as War Machine On TMZ In The Spit Bag. It's the Venus de Milo of MMA craziness.
My eyes still turn to dollar signs when I picture the bidding war those spit bag companies must have waged to see their name on the back of Machine's shorts.
If I could throw on my Mom jeans for a moment: why would this young man do this to himself?
It's a body mod thing called scarification. For when tattooing the whites of your eyes green is simply not enough.
The good news is that, outside himself, this is a victimless brand of crazy.
This man is not going to end well.
Website MiddleEasy sums up the latest developments in quite entertaining fashion, but in case you missed it: Datsik is possibly a schizophrenic, definitely a horrible racist, definitely a serious criminal, definitely violent and definitely once escaped from a psychiatric hospital. Oh, and he also definitely once knocked out Andrei Arlovski in a sanctioned MMA fight.
Any chance you're interested in an in-cage highlight reel, including the Arlovski fight and all set to the Mortal Kombat theme song? If so, please enjoy.
About six months ago, the great and terrible Renzo Gracie singlehandedly fought off two would-be muggers in New York. And not only that, he live-tweeted the whole thing.
However, Renzo isn't the only MMA community member taking it upon himself to take out the garbage. Runners up here include Jon Jones, Nick Ring and of course Phoenix Jones.
The whole story (which is so much more than worth a read) is a little muddled. But it's real, and it's spectacular.
Nick Diaz lost to Joe Riggs at UFC 57 in 2006. They both went to the hospital. Their paths crossed at said hospital. They fought. I can just picture the little foil-sealed juice cups skittering across the hallway.
You get all hepped up on supplements and energy drinks, you drive on the sidewalk, you get lots and lots of cop cars involved, you have a widely photographed standoff, you go away in cuffs.
So goes the craziest day (that I know of) in the life of one of MMA's greatest crazy characters. The long version is even crazier.
It gives me no pleasure to include Joe Son, but his omission would be too glaring. Luckily, he can't profit from his own disgusting story. Son of Sam law and all.
Junie Browning seemed to have it all. Just like Bogey and Bacall. However, at some point in life, you have to learn that life does not—it CANNOT—consist solely of crazy hospital freakouts.
Maybe we all learn that lesson in different ways. But we all learn it, somehow, in the end.
Junie Browning learned in Thailand, when he basically got in a bar fight with the wrongest of the wrong guys and ended up having to flee to the nearest friendly consolate on alligatorback, or some animal like that.
Here's the full story if you're a sucker for "the details as they actually happened."
This guy is like Danny Ocean crossed with Jason Bourne crossed with, I don't know, Biff Tannen. And he is the proud owner, for good and all, of the craziest story ever to befall any MMA fighter. Or, for that matter, any professional athlete ever.
Might as well go all-in here: There are probably like four people alive with crazier stories than "Lightning" Lee Murray.
Want more crazy? Seek out Scott Harris on Twitter.