EliteXC Recap: Kimbo's Poor Skills Finally Surface
I myself have never been a fan of Kimbo Slice. I may be classified as a "purist" or "old fashioned" (if that term even applies to MMA).
However, that is not why I dislike Kimbo—it's because I realized his poor skills. Sure he can punch, but so can Kalib Starnes, who is probably three times as talented as Kimbo. Here's the breakdown of Kimbo's flash KO bout and the rest of the card.
First, we'll start with the fight everyone tuned in to see, or should I say expected to see. The night had an inauspicious start as Ken Shamrock was discovered to have cut himself above his eye and needed stitches, which disqualified him from competition.
This left me with an empty and disappointed feeling in my stomach. Not to mention a relieved feeling in Kimbo's leg. This is added on top of the fact that Frank has more ammunition to crap on Ken, which he took full advantage of, calling Ken's cut "a disgrace to the Shamrock family legacy."
The man who stepped in was Seth "The Silverback" Petruzelli. Petruzelli fought on TUF 2, which apparently made him a veteran of the UFC according to Mauro Ranallo, and saw some action on different KOTC cards including a fight against Dan Severn (who was 50 at the time of the fight).
Kimbo's wrestling and submission skills had been challenged hard and often by many of his critics and in a deft move by Pro Elite management they chose a karate practitioner.
Safe bet, right? Wrong.
Sure, many believed Kimbo would get submitted by Ken, but Ken is stubborn, has a deteriorated chin, and has lost his quick reflexes. Speaking of reflexes, that is what did Kimbo in.
Kimbo came out looking like he was ready to go and backed Seth up against the cage without even throwing a punch, before he cocked back ready to throw some bombs.
With his unorthodox style, Petruzelli threw a front kick and Kimbo, being inexperienced, dropped his hands to protect himself and caught a straight to the chin, stunning him. Then as Kimbo fell to the canvas he was caught by a few power punches, the rolling to his back got beat down with a few more right hands.
Completely out of it, Kimbo tried to double leg the ref after the fight ended. 11 seconds of mayhem for sure, but an eyeopening 11 for sure.
The biggest things I realized were: Kimbo can't handle unorthodox strikers and that he can't handle fighters with good reflexes. Karate style threw Kimbo off and Petruzelli's quick reflexes landed a punch that older opponents like Mercer, Tank, and Shamrock could not or would not have landed.
This will certainly change the landscape of both EliteXC and Kimbo's career.
One other notable fight on the card was Radach vs. Ninja, where Radach knocked out Ninja in the second after an exciting first round where both fighters used effective striking and ground technique to generate an extremely exciting fight.
Another good fight was Arlovski vs. Nelson. Arlovski was dominated on the ground in the first round where a surprisingly athletic Nelson used his wrestling and jui jitsu to work for armlocks and use some ground and pound to soften Arlovski. Thse second round was an entirely different story an Arlovski used his knees and hands to smash Nelson and finally landed a huge hook to put Nelson face down on the mat. Some complaint from Nelson was heard, but in my book, was completely irrational.
Lastly, there was EliteXC champ Jake Shields vs. Cage Rage Champ, Paul Daley. In this bout, Daley looked strong on his feet and seemed like he could bludgeon Shields if the fight remained standing.
However, this was not to be, as Shields took the fight to the ground where Daley looked completely overmatched and gave up a mount over and over again where he was peppered with shots until he was finally armbarred and tapped. Some thought that his technique was to expend as little energy as possible and then beat a tired Shields on the feet.
However, this plan completely backfired as the BJJ expert Shields took advantage of Daley's shortcomings on the ground.
There were a few womens fights on the card, but I found Gina Carano's fight a snorefest, save maybe the last 15 seconds where Gina landed a few powerful kicks that shocked the crowd out of slumber to see the decision.
Takahashi vs. Cyborg was much different. Cyborg and Takahashi went back and forth, but Cyborg definitely cemented herself as the top contender to Carano. Cyborg was most certainly convincing in that aspect.
In the end of it I found it to be a moderately entertaining card, but the calls from the crowd that pleaded for strictly stand up wars disappointed me as I was looking forward to seeing all aspects of MMA, not one.
That type of MMA defeats the purpose of mixing disciplines. The fights were good though—lots of heart and varying styles, including "facesmashing fu". EliteXC may be alright after all, especially since they are partnered with Affliction.
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