Nick Diaz and the 25 Dumbest Moments in MMA History
Throughout the history of any sport there are legendary moments embedded that will burn brightly in the memories of fans.
Despite MMA's relatively short history, there are plenty of these moments such as Anderson Silva's triangle choke of Chael Sonnen or Matt Serra's unbelievable knockout of Georges St-Pierre.
But for each one of these legendary moments there is one that isn't so legendary and is kind of absurd or even outright stupid.
What are some of these moments? Read and find out but keep in mind that it is difficult to quantify absurdity/stupidity/dumbness so the slides aren't ranked; what is only kind of dumb to one person may seem really idiotic to another (or not stupid at all).
Art Jimmerson Wears One Glove
This is one of the most infamous moments in UFC history. Boxer Art Jimmerson wore only one glove at his UFC 1 fight against Royce Gracie.
Not much more to say about this one aside from saying it wasn't that smart and its reputation as an indicator of the ridiculousness of the pre-Zuffa era is deserved.
Kimo and Joe Son Walk out on Crosses
Even though this is technically two separate moments it's being counted as one because it's the same offense: walking out carrying a large crucifix and sapping precious energy right before the fight.
It also helped diminish any credibility the UFC had left by that point because it blurred the lines between the UFC and professional wrestling.
Kimo and Son claimed that their mission was to spread the word of god and that they were religious men. This was later proved to be a false claim since Son was eventually convicted for rape.
For all of these reasons, this moment (or these moments) were pretty dumb.
Kevin Randleman Knocks Himself out
The UFC was struggling by the time UFC 24 came along. SEG, the company that owned the UFC, was in dire financial straits.
Kevin Randleman had recently been crowned UFC heavyweight champion and was scheduled to make his first defense against Brazilian standout Pedro "The Rock" Rizzo. Hence the event's rather unimaginative title, UFC 24: First Defense.
As fate would have it, the two fighters would not meet at UFC 24. While Randleman was backstage, he slipped and fell on the concrete and was completely knocked out. He was rushed to the hospital, and the fans were left with Tedd Williams vs. Steve Judson as a main event...lucky them.
While this isn't Randleman's fault, it's highly indicative of the absurdity and poor fortunes of the SEG days.
Ken Shamrock Gets Cut on Fight Day
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Ken Shamrock was set to fight Kimbo Slice at EliteXC: Heat, but something happened that day that stopped the fight from taking place.
Earlier on the day of the fight, Shamrock was rolling with a training partner and received a headbutt that cut him over the eye, the doctor ruled that he couldn't fight and a replacement was hurriedly found; Seth Petruzelli.
The rest is history (in case you don't know Petruzelli easily disposed of Slice and EliteXC folded shortly thereafter).
Not only was this moment just dumb, it ultimately caused the destruction of a fight promotion!
Ken Shamrock's "Living Death"
Unfortunately, MMA legend Ken Shamrock is part of as many bad moments in MMA as he is good ones.
Another one of the bad ones took place during his "legendary" feud with Tito Ortiz. At the press conference prior to their first encounter, Ken Shamrock claimed he would beat Ortiz "into the living death." Ortiz appropriately responded with laughter. In response, Ken Shamrock flipped a chair.
Beating someone into a "living death" is now sort of a meme/joke on MMA forums.
But poor Ken Shamrock, even after these two moments we aren't done with him.
Ken Shamrock Fights James Toney
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While this one hasn't happened yet, even the idea of it is absurd.
First, an over-the-hill MMA fighter taking on an over-the-hill boxer doesn't sound like a great idea to begin with.
Second, when one looks at the rules of the bout which require a stand-up after 30 seconds on the ground, fans KNOW it isn't a good idea.
There is no point in the two men fighting and it serves only to be a freak show fight that diminishes the image of the sport, speaking of freak show fights...
Bob Sapp Fights Cartoon Character
In 2008, in Japan's famous end of the year show, "Dynamite!! 2008" Bob Sapp was matched up against a cartoon character; the freak show fight to end all freak show fights.
Mind you this was not a fighter who was so lively that he was described as a cartoon character, it was a fighter who wore the outfit and mask of the Japanese cartoon character Kinniku Mantaro.
Inside the mask was Japanese professional wrestler Akihito Tanaka.
Sapp won the fight but when a fighter who already has a reputation as a freak show fighter beats up a pro wrestler/cartoon character, there really are no winners.
Yamma Pit Fighting's Brief Existence
Bob Meyrowitz, the owner of the UFC before it was sold to Zuffa, decided to venture back into the MMA business after the Zuffa purchase. Unfortunately for the MMA world, the product of this was Yamma Pit Fighting.
The primary advertising gimmick employed by Yamma was their "revolutionary" cage, which was circular and had slanted edges—supposedly to prevent "lay and pray" and make the fights more exciting. Yamma also returned to the tournament structure.
The card was boring, since it was packed with heavyweight wrestlers with poor conditioning as well as two "masters super fights" in which fighters who had not been relevant in nearly a decade were marketed as though they were still stars.
Even worse, some of the announcing team was kept from the original UFC days.
Having boring fights/fighters, poor production quality, washed up talent and broadcasting from the UFC days sure sounds pretty dumb and it rightfully was a failure. There was never a second show much to the everlasting gratitude of the MMA community.
The IFL Being Founded and Becoming Publically Traded
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It's hard to believe now but people really thought that a league of arbitrary fight teams (New York Pitbulls, Quad City Silverbacks, etc.) consisting of some fighters who didn't even live in the city the team was located in could actually beat the UFC.
This league was known as the International Fight League or IFL. It made a splash when it first started but then the novelty wore off and people realized that a team concept was totally absurd for MMA among other shortcomings such as a lack of high level talent (although some IFL alumni did have successful careers after the organization's demise).
Even worse, it opened up Pandora's box when it became a publicly traded company only 10 months after opening their doors.
The league was never the same after this and it may be a likely cause of their demise since once they became publicly traded, IFL management was subject not to themselves but to shareholders.
The IFL (and its shareholders) eventually realized the absurdity of their premise and tried to make the league focus on prestigious fight camps such as Renzo Gracie's gym, Militech Fighting Systems, American Top Team, and others but it was too late and the IFL bit the dust in 2008, lasting only a little over two years.
Steve Jennum Wins UFC 3
When UFC 3 started, Royce Gracie was again a shoo-in to win. But what happened that night shocked everybody.
Gracie managed to beat the brutish Kimo Leopoldo but it cost him all the strength he had. He couldn't continue on.
Ken Shamrock also didn't continue, so Harold Howard had to face alternate Steve Jennum (who was fresh and hadn't fought once) in the finals.
Jennum defeated Howard and won UFC 3 only having to fight one fight. Fans were angry and the rules were changed after this. Now, the alternates for each tournament are decided by alternate matches so that alternates would at least have fought once that night.
The UFC Hires James Toney
This one was pretty dumb. Apparently, the MMA world forgot what happened when a pure striker met a fighter who could grapple.
And guess what?
Couture took him down immediately and submitted him. No point in wasting a spot on the card or even the money it took to pay Toney (which was taken by the IRS anyway). To make the event even more of a joke, Toney's rear-end was visible at the weigh-ins.
Wanderlei Silva Wants to WHAT Chuck?
At the time of UFC 61, there were rumors circulating that Wanderlei Silva could be joining the UFC. The fight everyone was dying to see Silva take was a fight against then UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell.
Silva had dominated Pride and Liddell had dominated the UFC. Would the meeting between these two to promote a hypothetical fight be what everyone had hoped?
Only if they had hoped for a colossal embarrassment. Wanderlei, hopefully by accident, said he wanted to "f***" Chuck" rather than saying he wanted to fight him.
This was the last thing the fans wanted to hear (at least I hope it's the last thing fans wanted to hear) since the second fight between Tito Ortiz and Ken Shamrock had been stopped prematurely in the eyes of many fans.
First that, then a heavily accented Brazilian wants to fornicate with their beloved Chuck Liddell, what next!?
This quote is still one of the most infamous in MMA.
The Rule Change That Caused the Detroit Dance
Detroit's UFC 9 was a highly anticipated event because it featured Ken Shamrock vs. Dan Severn as the main event.
Unfortunately, the event was not welcomed by one key demographic: uptight politicians looking for an easy win over "smut" like the UFC. A legal battle in the Detroit courts ensued and it was decided that the event could go on if certain rules were adopted.
One of these rules was banning close-fisted strikes to the head under pain of arrest. While the UFC and referee John McCarthy looked the other way when infractions were made in the undercard, Shamrock and Severn didn't take any risks and the fight was 20 minutes of circling.
Bill Wallace's Ultimate Fighting "Challenge" and Belch
When the genesis of an organization whose goal was to revolutionize martial arts was complete and the UFC was ready to go, what would the first legendary words be?
They were a let down. Announcer, kickboxer and Karate stylist Bill "Superfoot" Wallace, not only gaffed when he called the UFC the "Ultimate fighting challenge" but he then audibly belched, all within the first 30 seconds of the broadcast!
Needless to say, Wallace never returned to the announcing table and his belch is still remembered as one of the dumbest moments in the sports history.
One thing that is fun about watching the old UFC events is seeing how little the commentators know about what is going on inside the cage. This is the case in UFC 3 when one of the commentators kept pronouncing "Judo" and "Sumo" as "Judu" and "Sumu" respectively.
Anyone who knew anything about martial arts must have rolled their eyes and groaned in anger when massive Sumo wrestler Emmanuel Yarborough pushed Keith Hackney through the cage door and one of the commentators yelled that it was "ULTIMATE SUMU!"
Unfortunately for Yarborough, we aren't done with him.
Emmanuel Yarborough vs. Daiju Takase
When people say Pride Fighting Championships had superior fighters and was a better organization, mention this fight, a freak show fight between two below .500 fighters.
When you watch the fight you'll realize that the whole idea was just absurd; there's no reason for this fight to have been booked!
Furthermore, it's actually kind of boring. At first, it seemed as though Yarborough was so massive that he had formed his own gravitational pull and poor Takase was trapped in orbit. But upon closer inspection, it can be realized that Takase is just choosing to run around him in circles for the greater part of the fight (and to think, Takase once tapped out Anderson Silva).
Overall, it wasn't MMA's finest hour and its one of the fights that sums up what was (and still is) wrong with Japanese MMA.
Kazuhiro Nakamura Feels the Need to Take off His Gi...in the Middle of a Fight
When one looks at Wanderlei Silva's record, Kazuhiro Nakamura is just one of many Japanese fighters that "The Axe Murderer" has run through but in reality the fight's ending is one of the most infamous in MMA!
What happened? At some point in the fight, Nakamura decided to take his gi top off and Silva used the mere seconds while Nakamura was defenseless to his advantage and stormed Nakamura, earning a TKO victory moments later.
The UFC Japan Fiasco
Who would've guessed that when Marcus "Conan" Silveira and Kazushi Sakuraba squared off at UFC Japan that the exact same fight would be happening a second time that night.
What was the issue?
Referee John McCarthy made a big mistake. When Sakuraba shot for a low takedown after Silveira threw a stinging combination, he mistakenly thought that Sakuraba had been knocked out and called off the fight—Silveira was the winner.
Sakuraba refused to leave the cage in protest and the result was eventually changed to a No Contest when McCarthy saw the footage and realized his mistake.
Unfortunately, Tank Abbott was unable to continue into the finals after defeating Yonji Anjo due to a hand injury.
Thus, UFC officials deemed that a rematch between Silveira and Sakuraba would determine who would be the tournament champion (and people complained about B.J Penn's instant rematch against Frankie Edgar, imagine them fighting again the same night).
Sakuraba went on to defeat Silveira and start a storied career but the genesis of that career was , unfortunately, in stupidity.
David Gardner Has a Lapse of Judgement
Watch the video and you'll get it. If you don't feel like wasting the time, here's the rundown: David Gardner had Japanese submission expert Shinya Aoki on his back and instead of defending the choke he imparts a greeting to the nation of Japan.
Aoki wasn't amused by the gesture and proceeded to choke Gardner out.
The UFC Signs Sean Gannon
Believe it or not, the UFC actually bought into the Kimbo Slice fad before EliteXC even existed. How did they do it? They did it by signing the man who beat up Slice in a famous Youtube video (it is provided on this slide for your viewing pleasure), Sean Gannon.
The UFC tried to capitalize on Gannon's "victory" (quotes are used because the fight was hardly official) by signing the Boston police officer but the move was a total failure. Gannon was dominated by Brandon Lee Hinkle and never seen in the UFC or MMA again.
EliteXC: Street Certified Fight Purses, Abbott Gets $126,000, One Man Gets $1
I don't know if EliteXC president Gary Shaw knew this, but Tank Abbott probably would've fought Kimbo Slice for a just a six pack, let alone $126,000. Regardless, paying a below .500 fighter that much money is asinine and this moment deserves to be on the list.
Concerning poor Moyses Gabin, the man who only made one dollar from his fight, it's unknown why he was only paid a dollar so I can't say for sure whether or not it was dumb to do it but when am I ever going to get a chance to mention that?
Rousimar Palhares Stops Fighting
UFC middleweight Rousimar Palhares is a leg lock FIEND. His leg locks are nasty and are applied with superlative quickness. That is why he was so shocked when Nate Marquardt so easily escaped from one of them at UFC Fight Night 22.
Once Marquardt escaped, Palhares stopped fighting to inform referee Herb Dean that he thought Marquardt had greased his legs. Marquardt took advantage of Palhares' guard being down and swarmed in for the TKO victory.
Unfortunately, Palhares didn't learn...
Rousimar Palhares Stops Fighting AGAIN
Apparently, Rousimar Palhares didn't listen to the great philosopher George W. Bush when he said "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me...you can't get fooled again," because Palhares did in fact get fooled again.
Palhares was starting to beat down Dan Miller when suddenly, Palhares thought that the referee (Herb Dean again) stopped it or that he had won the fight because he walked away with his arms up shouting. He even went and sat on top of the cage, "victorious."
When Dean informed him that the fight wasn't over and restarted the action, Palhares almost got knocked out!
Luckily for Palhares, he kept his wits and won a unanimous decision but his "victory" over Miller went down in MMA history as one of the dumbest moments in the history of the sport.
Paul Daley Hits Josh Koscheck After the Bell
While Paul Daley may not have liked Josh Koscheck and may have been upset with things that he said during the fight, he had his chance to hit him and hitting him after the bell was the worst mistake of his career since it essentially relegated him to Strikeforce for the rest of his life.
There is perhaps only one more career-killing move that was dumber than this.
O Nick Diaz Where Art Thou?
Earlier today, it was announced that Nick Diaz was out of his title fight against UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre for failing to attend two press conferences.
Diaz knew what was at stake but chose not to go, he chose not to "play the game." Even his manager, Cesar Gracie, was appalled.
I know the preface said that the list wasn't ranked but this moment has to take the cake. Diaz cost himself the biggest fight of his life and may have even ruined his whole career making this moment the absolute dumbest in the history of mixed martial arts.