By Anthony McClean, Editor In Chief Emeritus NEW HAVEN (BASN) —...
A Diced And ‘Sliced’ Upset
Most recently, the New York Giants beating the New England Patriots in this year’s Super Bowl. The Patriots ended the 2007-08 regular season at 16-0. The Giants were an NFC wild card and didn’t play a single playoff game at home. They weren’t expected to beat New England, but Eli Manning and company shocked everybody.
A Kimbo Slice loss to Ken Shamrock, perhaps the most recognizable MMA fighter of all-time, would have been an upset. Even though Shamrock has a wealth of experience, he has been on the downside of his career for the last five years.
The 44 year-old Shamrock hadn’t won a fight in MMA since June 2004. Shamrock would have entered his bout with Kimbo Slice having lost 8 of his last 10 fights, including the last five by knockout.It was widely expected that Kimbo Slice would send Shamrock to his sixth consecutive stoppage loss.
However, when Shamrock pulled out of the fight after having received a reported seven stitches to close a gash above his left eye, the promoters at Elite XC scrambled at the last minute to find an opponent for Slice.
The opponent figured to be a soft touch for Slice, who was fighting at home at the Bank Atlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida in the main event of a nationally televised Elite XC broadcast on CBS
Seth Petruzelli, a late sub, wasn’t supposed to even scratch, let alone place a finger on Slice. It was widely expected that Petruzelli (or whoever) stepped into the ring with Slice would become his fourth consecutive punching bag.
Instead, to the shock of many at ringside and the world watching, a straight-right to the chin followed by a hammering barrage of punches took Slice out in just 14 seconds.
“It was an opportunity to step up,” Petruzelli commented. “This is something I wanted all my life.” It was clearly one of the biggest upsets in MMA history because, it was perhaps the least expected.
“It’s all good,” a stunned Kimbo Slice said. In reality, what else could he have said because the defeat was such a shock.
Slice, who had gained the reputation of being an internet phenomenon for his street fighting skills, power, strength, and unusual goatee, was stunned and nearly speechless.
More on Petruzelli
At 6-feet, 200 pounds, Petruzelli, 28, Cape Cod, Florida, has competed in a number of MMA associations including the UFC and K-1. Petruzelli even fought the legendary K-1 star Bob Sapp, but lost by first-round knockout in March 2004. Petruzelli’s MMA record stands at 10-4, 9 KOs.
There are so many ways to win and so many ways to lose in MMA competition. It’s unknown whether Kimbo Slice and Petruzelli will have a rematch or whether Shamrock is still in the picture. It will probably take upwards to six to eight weeks to laceration above his left eye to heal.
One thing is for sure, the world will see just how good Kimbo Slice is following an unexpected defeat. The same way winning a world title can make a fighter better, a defeat can reveal a lot about a fighter’s resiliency.
No one can question Shamrock’s desire to fight. He keeps coming back from knockout loss, after knockout loss, after knockout loss, after knockout loss, after knockout loss…
Petruzelli had been stopped and submitted several times during his career and scored perhaps the biggest victory of his life on short notice.
But can Kimbo survive the devastation of getting busted open and pummeled in 14 seconds by an unknown in your own hometown? There are a lot of questions surrounding the circumstances of Slice’s defeat and Kevin Ferguson can find those answers in the ring.
The undercard: Gina Carano continued her climb up the MMA women’s ranks with a resounding unanimous decision victory over Kelly Kobold-Gavin (30-27 twice, 29-28). Carano easily handled the much smaller, but gritty Kobold. It was an easy win for Carano, as Kobold had a difficult time taking her down. Carano’s punching power and speed for a female MMA competitor at 140 lbs. cannot be ignored.
Next up for Carano is an intriguing showdown with Brazil’s Cristiane Santos. She appeared on the non-televised portion of the card and won a unanimous decision over Japan’s Yoko Takahashi. Santos appeared to be fast, gritty, and strong. She should provide a much better test for Carano. Kobold was simply outmatched.
Former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski was successful in his MMA debut under Elite XC. Arlovski knocked out Roy Nelson with a single punch at 3:14 of the second round. Arlovski was very sharp and in tremendous shape. Although Arlovski was taller 6-foot-4, he was outweighed by more than 25 pounds by the 6-foot, 265-pound slugger.
However, Nelson simply didn’t have the finesse, sharpness, and conditioning to match Arlovski during the course of three five-minute rounds. The bout was nationally televised “showcase” for Arlovski and he didn’t disappoint.
Elite XC welterweight champion Jake Fields of San Francisco, California, won his 21st competition in MMA with an armbar submission of Great Britain’s Paul Daley at 3:21 of the second round. It was also the first successful defense of the title he won in July.
Also, American middleweight Benji Radach knocked out Brazilian Murlio Rua at 2:31 of round two. Rua was no match for Radach while standing toe-to-toe. Radach was simply too fast with his hands and opened a cut around Rua’s left eye in the opening round. However, on the ground, Rua performed better.
The end came after Rua attacked Radach against the cage with a high knee, but walked into a solid right hand. With his opponent flat on his back, Radach launched a series of right hands to Rua’s chin that took him out.