The 10 Most Embarrassing Fighter Performances in MMA History (With Video)
Because of the individual nature of the sport, the egos of MMA fighters may be on the line during competition more than any other athlete.
In most cases, fighters are able to leave their bouts with dignity intact. However, some lackluster appearances can be image-damaging for a competitor.
Here are the 10 most embarrassing performances in the history of MMA.
10. Forrest Griffin vs. Anderson Silva
Although he was at a noticeable disadvantage on the technical side of the striking department, few expected Griffin to be outclassed to the extent that he was by Silva.
After being finished by a nonchalant, fadeaway punch, Griffin ran out of the Octagon and into the dressing rooms.
9. Mirko Filipovic vs. Gabriel Gonzaga
After winning the 2006 Pride Openweight Grand Prix, Mirko Filipovic joined the UFC, where he was expected to compete for the UFC Heavyweight Championship.
After finishing Eddie Sanchez in his first Octagon appearance, Filipovic was given a fight with Gabriel Gonzaga to determine the top contender in the division.
Although Gonzaga had won his last five fights, few gave him a chance against the Croatian kickboxer. If Gonzaga was going to defeat Filipovic, it certainly wasn't going happen on his feet—or was it?
Filipovic had produced a highlight reel of head kick knockouts throughout his career leading into this fight, but it was Gonzaga who gave Filipovic a taste of his own medicine with this career-altering knockout.
8. Georges St-Pierre vs. Matt Serra I
Heading into his title defense against Matt Serra at UFC 69, Georges St-Pierre was riding a three-fight win streak that included wins over Matt Hughes, B.J. Penn and Sean Sherk.
St-Pierre was expected to dominate Serra, who had earned the title shot by defeating Chris Lytle in the Season 4 finale of TUF.
However, Serra overwhelmed St-Pierre in the first round to temporarily dethrone the Canadian from his spot atop the welterweight division.
7. Kimbo Slice vs. Seth Petruzelli
After winning the first three fights of his career, Kimbo Slice was scheduled for a fight with Ken Shamrock in October 2008. However, only hours before the fight, Shamrock suffered a cut that would not allow him to compete.
Seth Petruzelli stepped in as Shamrock's replacement and disposed of Slice in only 14 seconds. After EliteXC had hyped Slice as being a mixed martial artist that should be taken seriously, this performance was a crushing blow to the drawing power of the former street fighter.
Shortly after the fight, EliteXC filed for bankruptcy. Most fault Slice's performance against Petruzelli for the downfall of the organization.
6. Ken Shamrock vs. Tito Ortiz I, II and III
Ken Shamrock and Tito Ortiz were part of the most heated rivalry in UFC history. However, Shamrock was never able to back up his talk in three fights with "The Huntington Beach Bad Boy."
All three times the two fought, Shamrock was unable to go the distance with Ortiz. Furthermore, when the two met twice in 2006, Ortiz grounded and pounded his way to victory in the first round of both fights.
Shamrock is a legend and pioneer of the sport, but he didn't do himself any favors by getting into a war he couldn't win against Ortiz.
5. Shinya Aoki vs. Yuichiro Nagashima
Last New Year's Eve, Shinya Aoki took on professional kickboxer Yuichiro Nagashima in a special rules fight.
In the first round, which was governed by kickboxing rules, Aoki continually flopped to the canvas to avoid striking with his opponent. Much to the dismay of the crowd, the effort allowed Aoki to survive into the second round, which was fought under MMA rules much more condusive to Aoki's grappling style.
However, Aoki was caught with a knee as he immediately shot in for a takedown to start the second frame. Had the knockout occured in the kickboxing round, this performance may not have been nearly as embarrassing for Aoki.
4. Matt Wiman vs. Spencer Fisher
At UFC 60, Matt Wiman made his UFC debut against Spencer Fisher. The fight would become quite the learning experience for Wiman.
Early in the second round, Fisher scored with an excellent combination. Wiman backed away and wagged his finger in the air as if to say, "Nice try, but that didn't hurt me."
Fisher took advantage of Wiman's lack of focus and landed a flying knee on the button. It resulted in a highlight-reel knockout for Fisher and the most embarrassing moment Wiman has had in the Octagon.
3. Tim Sylvia vs. Ray Mercer
Coming off of back-to-back losses against Antonio Rodrigo Noguiera and Fedor Emelianenko, it was clear that Tim Sylvia was no longer one of the best of the best in the world.
However, that did not mean he wasn't expected to defeat 48-year-old Ray Mercer in June 2009. Nonetheless, Mercer, a retired professional boxer, recorded a one-punch knockout of Sylvia in just nine seconds.
In addition to coming into the fight extremely out of shape, the loss made it hard for Sylia's critics to ever take him seriously as a fighter again.
2. David Gardner vs. Shinya Aoki
A March 2009 fight with Shinya Aoki turned into the lowlight of David Gardner's career, as he was forced to tap to one of the most humiliating submissions in MMA history.
About five minutes into the fight, Aoki had taken Gardner's back, but he wasn't initially able to sink in a choke. Confident that he had complete control of Aoki's wrist, Gardner looked up and uttered his famous last words.
As Gardner waved to the Japanese audience, Aoki immediately wrapped his right arm around his opponent's neck and finished the fight with a rear naked choke.
1. Kalib Starnes vs. Nate Quarry
After losing to Alan Belcher in his previous fight, Kalib Starnes met Nate Quarry at UFC 83.
Apparently, Stanres had no intentions of actually fighting that night, as he avoided engaging with his opponent for nearly the entire 15 minutes.
After Starnes had backpedaled for most of the fight, Quarry mocked his opponent in the closing seconds of the bout.
One judge ended up scoring the bout 30-24, the second largest margin of victory in UFC history.