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Rear Naked Ramblings – Hey, They Paid Me To Stand With Kimbo Too

News and notes from MMA, boxing, and pro wrestling …

I understand why everyone is bothered with the idea that Seth Petruzelli was told that he would be paid more money to stand with Kimbo. On the surface, I can see why people are up in arms. But I’m not so bothered. Actually, I think that Petruzelli’s lack of consistency in his story is the bigger issue. Originally, he mentioned that the promoter “hinted” to him that he should stand with Kimbo. And then in the same sentence, he said they paid him more money to stand with Kimbo. Petruzelli was, and still is, a lower level fighter. It’s not to say that he’s not good at what he does, but in no way is he in the upper level. So it makes sense that he wants to promote his win as much as possible. It also shows what happens when you put people in main event situations who aren’t ready to be in them. Do you think Ken Shamrock would’ve flip flopped his stories as much has the same thing happened to him?

ESPN.com reported that there is an investigation underway.

After repeated calls from ESPN.com, the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation — which oversees the State Boxing Commission — said Thursday that it has opened a preliminary investigation into the matter.

I started to think about how the UFC offers “best fight” bonuses with the intention of delivering the most exciting fights. Generally, the fights that win those bonuses are ones with lots of stand-up fighting involved. So how different is that from what they are saying EXC did, if they even did it? On one hand, you have a company that is rumored to have told one fighter to stand-up and punch and they will pay him more. And on the other hand, you have a company that tells all their fighters that they can win money by doing the same thing. I get the difference. I really do. I just don’t think there’s a huge difference between the two different strategies.

And for those people talking about fight fixing, they don’t understand the issue. That’s not what the issue is.

Because WWE is creatively walking in quick sand, Chris Jericho’s awesome run this year as champion is going to be forgotten. One could say Edge too, except he was able to main event an excellent Wrestlemania against the Undertaker. Jericho might not have as memorable a match, and thus, his fantastic run right now might not be remembered because of the current funk WWE is in. There are guys who are on his level as heels. Edge is right there with him and the second Randy Orton can wrestle again, he’s probably right with the both of them. But there’s a certain realism with his character that neither guy can duplicate, and I’m not sure we’ve seen a heel with that type of realism in a long time. He’s really at a level that no one else is in the company when it comes to drawing heat.

Photo by Scott Fife

I recently purchased Bret Hart’s Hitman book and am looking forward to plowing through it. I also purchased Wrestling With Shadows the other day and will re-watch that as well. I was never the biggest Bret Hart fan in the world as his prime was at a point where I wasn’t watching much WWE, or even wrestling period. But I’ve always found him as this interesting character who seems to value his legacy more than any athlete I can ever remember. And add to that, the terrible tragedies he’s had to overcome, there are just many layers to the man who had no problem calling himself the best. I imagine that I’ll review it here, but the book is huge, so it will take some time to get through it.

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2 thoughts on “Rear Naked Ramblings – Hey, They Paid Me To Stand With Kimbo Too

  1. I’m a little less understanding about the whole Kimbo situation. It has left me feeling a little bit unease. There was a certain comfort in the belief that everything was on the level in MMA – The belief that both fighters compete on an equal playing field.

    When UFC offers a best fight bonus, it’s not stacking the deck against one guy. Technically, they do have the submission and knockout of the night bonus as well, so a fighter can earn a reward regardless of what strategy he chooses to utilize. And while stand up brawls may often win the fight of the night bonus, it’s not impossible to take the honor by having a really technical ground battle either.

    Saying that you will reward one fighter for going against his better judgment is completely unethical. What if it was Shamrock in there? The general consensus was that his only chance of winning would be by getting the fight to the floor. Having a stand up fight would be completely stacking the deck against him.

    A perfect example would be Houston Alexander. Alexander has been something of a draw for UFC, but it has been evident that his ground skills are not up to par. If UFC offered Eric Schafer the same deal as was (supposedly) offered to Petruzelli, would the outcome of that fight remained the same? I don’t believe it would have.

    I think a lot of people were turned off boxing because of a feeling that contests weren’t always competed on a level playing field, and I would hate to see this type of situation creep into MMA, or any sport for that matter.

    I just preordered Bret’s book yesterday. He’s doing a signing here when it’s officially released.

  2. I also think it’s wack, but I guess my point is that there’s not as big of a difference between the two as one might think. They main goal is exactly the same, which is to give people exciting fights. You could say that they also wanted to make sure that Kimbo didn’t get embarrassed, but it happened anyway.

    That’s tight man. If you get a picture with Bret, send it over. We’ll put it on the site.

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