Top 20 WTF moments in UFC history

In a sport once referred to by Republican Presidential nominee
John McCain as “human cock fighting”, it’s an
easy assumption that there have been a lot of wild, bewildering,
and downright weird moments in the past 20 years. The UFC has had
its fair share of situations which have left those watching saying,
“WTF”. There have been strange fights, strange
entrances, and more than enough strange people involved in the
UFC’s history. Here are the top 20 WTF moments.

#20: It’s “Championship” not
“Challenge”

Doomed from the start. It’s absolutely incredible in every
way imaginable that the UFC has lasted this long and grown this
big. For all those watching 20 years ago or who rented the VHS tape
from the “special interest” section of a local video
store or who are catching up on the history via the internet, the
very first words ever uttered at UFC 1 were an enormous
mistake.

“Hello, ladies and gentlemen, you’re about to see
something you have never seen before – the Ultimate Fighting
Challenge.”

It’s championship! IT’S CHAMPIONSHIP! Unbelievable.
The first pay-per-view event of its kind was introduced and hosted
by karate and kickboxing champion Bill “Superfoot”
Wallace who was in rare form on November 12th, 1993. Moments after
screwing up the company’s name in his first breath, Wallace
burped while mentioning the McNichols Sports Arena. Actually,
“Superfoot” belched the word arena, which he did
politely excuse himself for.

That was only the beginning. The very beginning of a night of
fights, which would feature a tooth getting kicked out of sumo
wrestler’s head and the watershed moment for Brazilian
jiu-jitsu. The entire event’s conception was a giant
commercial for a brand of submission wrestling taught by the Gracie
family and it was wildly successful as that martial art has become
bigger by the day. Subsequently, the sport of MMA has become pretty
big too, but a lot of that came years later in events far different
than the original.

#19: The era of nipple pinching

There was definitely a time when some of the best and most
famous fighters in the UFC started all of their fights by pinching
their nipples. Yep. It was all thanks to current UFC welterweight
champion Georges St-Pierre and something he read in a book.
Supposedly, St-Pierre learned that Roman soldiers would pinch their
nipples for good luck prior to going into battle. Sure, GSP,
sure.

Either way, the UFC fighters who comprised Team Jackson’s
began doing it in the Octagon. From the Canadian-born champ himself
to
The
Ultimate Fighter
2 winner and former UFC light-heavyweight
champ Rashad Evans, and just about everyone else who was a member
of the Albuquerque, New Mexico gym was pinching their nipples live
on pay-per-view or on free TV.

You just haven’t lived until you’ve seen Keith
“The Dean of Mean” Jardine, with that face/goatee that
only a mother could love, pinching a nipple or two before getting
bloody in a caged-brawl. Of course, guys like St-Pierre and Evans
tried to play it off like it wasn’t weird, but good
ole’ Jardine would give a little smile to the camera when
tweaking.

#18: BJ Penn gets kissed by a dude during
entrance

At UFC 94, it was champion vs. champion as multi-division talent
and future UFC Hall of Famer “The Prodigy” B.J. Penn
was stepping up in weight to rematch Georges St-Pierre for his
welterweight title. It was a superfight; it was the superfight. The
155 pound champ fighting the 170 pound champ who roughly 3 years
earlier fought to a controversial split-decision.

With Penn heading to face the toughest opponent he could ever
ask for and to do it at a higher weight, probably the last thing
the fighting Hawaiian needed was to be kissed on the cheek on his
way to the Octagon by a known former male prostitute slash heroin
addict. Yep. If you paused or rewound when that long haired,
tattooed, stringbean of a man pops his head out of the crowd to
plant a wet one on the then UFC lightweight champ’s cheek,
you may – emphasis on “may” – have recognized turbulent
semi-famous rapper Mickey Avalon’s face.

UFC President Dana White has said over and over again throughout
the years, that he likes to keep his distance from fighters during
fight week and, especially, fight day because he doesn’t want
to mess with their mindset. That’s the UFC boss saying that
he gives one speech to all the fighters to get them jazzed up, but
besides that he doesn’t talk or really interact with any of
the fighters because White worries it may mess with their tuned in
fighting mentality.

Meanwhile, seconds away from the biggest and most difficult
fight of his life, Penn’s got Avalon’s unwanted lips
pressed against his face. The MGM Grand’s security failed
that night.

#17: Forrest Griffin can cry if he wants to

Not once, but twice.
The
Ultimate Fighter
season 1 winner and former UFC
light-heavyweight champion and UFC Hall of Famer and huge fan
favorite Forrest Griffin has cried inside the Octagon. Not tears of
joy, but bawling in defeat. Honestly, many fighters – male fighters
– have cried in and out of the cage, watch any episode of The
Ultimate Fighter ever. But, it was simply shocking seeing that raw
emotion streaming down Griffin’s face after seeing him in
several bloody bouts.

At UFC 66, Griffin lost inside the Octagon for the first time in
a really real way. Two fights earlier, Griffin lost a
split-decision to Tito Ortiz, but that back-and-forth battle was
nothing like this. Team Jackson product Keith Jardine tore apart
Griffin in less than a round by dropping Griffin and then blasting
him with vicious ground and pound, which brought a quick close to
the bout. Whether it was the TKO or losing a fight he was the
favorite to win, when the cameras spun around to see
Griffin’s reaction – he was sitting against the cage
sobbing.

Obviously, Griffin received and still does receive a lot of
flack for that unflattering moment, so when Griffin found himself
in a similar situation a few years later getting flattened by then
UFC middleweight king Anderson Silva – Griffin took action. That
“action” was running out of the Octagon to shed any
tears in the locker room instead of in front of an entire arena of
jeering and very unforgiving Philadelphia fight fans. While, he got
additional flack for that, it was the right decision.

Seriously though, Griffin’s a tough SOB. The man is a 5x
Fight of the Night winner and 3x Fight of the Year winner and was
in the most famous fight in company history, which he won. Also,
Griffin is a solid humanitarian. But, he cried a couple times and
that was memorable too.

#16: Lyoto Machida drinks urine

Almost always, his own. There was that one time, just a few
months ago, he drank a sexy lady Brazilian TV reporter’s pee
and she drank his, which really makes American television seem
quite tame. But we digress…

Former UFC light-heavyweight champion Lyoto “The
Dragon” Machida pisses excellence and then drinks it every
morning. Or at least his Shotokan karate master dad, Yoshizo
Machida, does and Lyoto does it most mornings. Either way, the 19-4
striking specialist does drink his own urine as a part of
“urine therapy”, which is based in the idea that
one’s first pee of the day contains nutrients. Talk about bad
morning breath!

The Machidas’ practice of this odd, ancient, and still
medically unfounded idea was revealed in a truly TMI episode of
UFC’s Countdown show previewing Machida’s rematch title
defense against Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 113. With
all the incredibly skillful knockouts Machida has recorded inside
the Octagon including the Knockout of the Year crane kick on Randy
Couture, there will always be the truly unforgettable detail of
this enigmatic fighter’s life that he wakes up, pees in a
cup, and then drinks it.

#15: Rousimar Palhares celebrates win while fight is still
going on

As many have learned recently, Rousimar Palhares might not be
all there in the head. Actually, what has gotten
“Toquinho” (translates to “tree stump”) in
trouble is stopping his attacks too late, but one of the more
confusing moments was when Palhares stopped too early at UFC
134.

In the first UFC event held in Brazil in 13 years, Palhares was
picked to fight in front of his home country fans against the New
Jersey tough Dan Miller. While many expected the two Brazilian
jiu-jitsu blackbelts to engage on the ground,
“Toquinho” began the bout winging his massive gorilla
arms at Miller and caught him with so big shots. With around 30
seconds left in the first round, Palhares dropped Miller and
administered some ground and pound. Referee Herb Dean got awfully
close to examine how Miller was defending these punches, but he
never signaled Palhares to stop.

Nevertheless, Palhares did stop – prematurely. The muscular
middleweight walked away triumphantly with arms raised in the air
then he hopped onto the top of the cage to see the Brazilian crowd
more clearly as he celebrated his win. Things became a bit awkward
as Dean then had to inform Palhares the bout did not end and he
needed to go back to roughing up Miller if he truly wanted to be
the winner.

So, Miller and Palhares shared a moment wear body language can
break the language barrier as the two recognized they needed to go
back to punching each other in the face. That’s when, Miller
nailed Palhares with a punch that nearly KOed the guy who was on
top of the cage only seconds ago.

Eventually, Palhares did go on to pick up a unanimous
decision.

#14: Nick Diaz and UFC 137

Did you know that UFC 137 was originally supposed to be in
Liverpool, England? Crazy, right? There were some scheduling issues
and the event was moved to Las Vegas. Pretty wild and weird
stuff.

Oh yeah, and then there was all that other stuff where Nick Diaz
was supposed to fight UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre
for the title in the main event, but Diaz was kicked off the card
for skipping a press conference. And then it was revealed at said
press conference that GSP was going to defend his title against
fellow Team Jackson-Winkeljohn member Carlos Condit who was set to
fight B.J. Penn in the co-main event. But that fight didn’t
materialize because St-Pierre tore his ACL not long later and was
out for a year, and Condit decided he would wait to tangle with the
champ. So, the UFC settled with re-instituting Diaz to UFC 137 to
have him face his idol, Penn, in the main event. Wait, what?!

For those wondering, that situation had never happened before in
the UFC. Diaz missed three separate flights to be at that press
conference and, apparently, had been ducking the camera crew
following him around for the UFC 137 preview show. Getting pulled
from a headlining title fight like that was unprecedented and, in
the end, Diaz still was the main event, which is hilarious.

The fight with Penn was one for the ages too. It was all the
mean mugging and boxing one can expect and gets delivered each and
every time from the Stockton slugger. Easily, the best moment of
the fight was something only the elder Diaz would ever do, he
headbutted Penn’s pawing jab. Who headbutts their
opponent’s fists?!

#13: Paul Daley suckerpunches Josh Koscheck

Ardent critics of the sport and/or the MMA ignorant, probably
assume that these blood-thirsty cagefighters have to pulled off
each other after every fight with chain lassos. Meanwhile, by far
the majority of fights end with handshakes and hugs. In many
regards, it’s a very gentlemanly competition with five-minute
breaks for accidental kicks to the cup and congratulatory words
between opposing coaches regardless of the outcome. But…

There’s always the exception that proves the rule. And for
the UFC, it’s British brawler Paul “Semtex” Daley
and his post-fight cheap shot against veteran villain Josh
Koscheck.

At UFC 113 in a title eliminator for the welterweight belt,
Koscheck took a rather boring takedown-heavy decision. The lead-up
to the bout was classic Kos with tons of trash talk and promises of
knockouts, which Daley and fight fans ate up with a spoon. Of
course come fight night, the former NCAA Division I National
Champion wrestler from Edinboro University did hit Daley with
something, but it wasn’t a punch – it was a blast double-leg
takedown. From there, Koscheck rode Daley on the ground and never
allowed the KO artist a second to throw hands.

When the clock ran out, Koscheck began his victory lap, but was
quickly met by Daley with a left hook that caught Kos on the
kisser. Referee “Big” Dan Miragliotta jumped into
action and bear hugged Daley while giving him a tongue lashing on
proper post-fight etiquette. Later that evening, UFC Prez Dana
White revealed that he had banned Daley from the UFC, which has
stood to this day.

Daley’s admitted since then that the emotions of the trash
talk plus the way the bout played out lead him to the regrettable
rash decision. Not to mention, there was that part in the fight
where Koscheck pretended he got kneed in the head, which a slow-mo
replay revealed that the knee merely grazed the accomplished
wrestler/actor’s blonde afro.

#12: Keith Hackney at UFC 3

If there was one fight to show new fans or never-watchers the
wild west-like early days of the UFC, Keith Hackney vs. Emmanuel
Yarborough is it.

At UFC’s third event, David fought Goliath in the Octagon
and won. On one side of the cage, the 5’11” Kenpo
karate blackbelt with a semi-mullet; on the other, the
6’8” and 600+ pounds of former sumo wrestler from
Rahway, NJ. They say size matters, but not to Hackney who struck
first with a open palm uppercut, which dropped Yarborough. Hackney
tried to pounce on the felled mammoth, but Yaborough regained his
wits and turned the tables on Hackney by getting his back and
delivering some wallops of his own. Hackney fought back in a frenzy
with Yarborough gripping and ripping Hackney’s black
tanktop.

Then the bout had a cartoonish and pro-wrestling intermission as
Yarborough shoved Hackney into the cage door, which burst open and
sent Hackney out of the Octagon. Hackney ran back into cage, ran to
his side, and, with a fire in his eyes, nodded to referee
“Big” John McCarthy that he was ready for one more go
around. The clash of body types resumed, Hackney hopping around
looking poised to strike, itching to strike, and then – he
struck.

Like a white tiger, Hackney swung his claws at
Yarborough’s head; more human like, Hackney sidekicked
Yarborough’s knees. The end came when Yarborough caught
Hackney’s kick and reeled his opponent into, but Hackney
began to blast Yarborough to the side of the head, which brought
the big man to his knees. From there, a bevy of punches were
delivered to the giant’s head until McCarthy had seen enough
and called the mythical match-up to a close.

All told, it took Hackney a second shy of two minutes to earn
the immortal nickname “The Giant Killer”.

#11: Keith Hackney at UFC 4

To the right people, the guy is an American legend. Let’s
be honest, Keith Hackney’s name should be yelled from the
rooftops every July 4th. Did you read the previous entry, Hackney
defeated a literal giant in 1994! Three months later, Hackney
scored the most devastating submission finish of them all: repeated
punches to the genitals.

Technically speaking, Hackney won by a one handed choke over Joe
Son, but we all know why Random Task from “Austin
Powers” really tapped.

It was a different ball(s) game in the mid-90’s. Hair
pulling was legal, the rounds had no time limits, actually there
were no rounds, and, as mentioned, groin strikes were a-okay inside
the Octagon. First thing first, how was every fight not decided by
groin strikes, right? If it’s legal, wouldn’t that be
everyone’s go to move? Apparently not. No one took advantage
of the flimsy rulebook better than Hackney did at UFC 4.

The bout quickly went to the ground as Son tried to take the
seasoned striker Hackney out of his element with an early takedown
attempt. Hackney ended up on top with Son holding Hackney in a
headlock. To loosen his opponent’s hold, Hackney began
delivering knuckle-sandwiches to Son’s private parts.
Initially, Son tried to blindly block them with his knee while
trying to maintain through the pain, but after a couple cleanly
landed on the family jewels, Son was pretty much done.

The legendary Hackney wasn’t done in the UFC and fought
two more bouts (both losses) with one featuring a glorious flowing
mullet and a wondrous failed somersault kick.

#10: Tim Sylvia s**ts his pants during a fight

It’s an incredibly unfamiliar term, an obsolete one to be
exact, but it’s absolutely the most appropriate word given
the WTF situation. Before the revealing the mystery, let’s
take a quote from the man himself on the story’s
authenticity.

“If you look at the fight you’ll see that when my
shorts came down, you’ll see the wet mark in my underwear,”
revealed former UFC heavyweight champ Tim Sylvia to the horror of
everyone forever.

To befoul one’s trousers or, in this case, one’s
sponsored fight shorts. Live on free television in the main event
at UFC Ultimate Fight Night 3, the world saw something horribly
historic, but most likely didn’t realize it at time. The
opportunity to see the infamous brownish wet stain, specifically,
appeared as the 6’8” Sylvia pressed his unlucky
opponent Assuerio Silva against the cage as Silva clung to Sylvia
like a cat in a tree.

The seemingly unembarrassable Sylvia explained that he had been
feeling ill all day and been battling a case of the
“runs”. And that battle manifested itself again in the
cage. While it was a fairly mundane fight that went the distance,
Sylvia did take home the unanimous decision despite dueling with
two very different opponents.

#9: Nate Quarry vs. Kalib Starnes

It takes two to tango and Kalib Starnes was in no mood to
dance.

At UFC 83 in Montreal, the reasonable thing to do may have been
for Starnes to tell his opponent Nate Quarry that he more or less
had no intention of fighting that evening. Or, at least,
that’s taking Starnes at his word that his lack of fight in
front of his countrymen was a silent protest against the unfairness
of the UFC.

There’s the other option, Quarry was too much for Starnes,
frustrated him early, and when the fight was nearing a close –
Starnes was more than ready for it to be over. In the first round,
Quarry outstruck Starnes by landing 30 significant strikes to 2. In
the second, the numbers were nearly identical with Starnes landing
a grand total of 3 significant strikes to Quarry’s 29, plus
“The Rock” defended a few takedown attempts. The third
and final round is where Starnes and Quarry’s bout went from
forgettable to phenomenal.

In the final minute or so of the bout, Starnes put his bike in
reverse and began backpedaling away from Quarry with no interest in
engaging. Quarry chased and chased until he saw the absurdity and
decided to exploit it. At first, Quarry play-acted a running man as
to poke fun at Starnes running away from him. The Canadian crowd
laughed and cheered Quarry with no punch or kick from Starnes in
revolt.

With no threat, Quarry finished the bout with his left hand
covering his face and his right arm blindly flailing from behind
it. If you’re a “Saved by the Bell” fan, it was
Screech’s self-defense. Adding to the absurdity, the judges
gave the decision to Quarry, but only Sensei Cecil Peoples got it
right giving the bout 30-24 in favor of Quarry.

#8: Anthony Pettis wins title and no one knew
it

The final fight in WEC history was a five round lightweight
title fight between then champion Benson Henderson and challenger
Anthony Pettis. It was 25 minutes of back and forth action
exhibiting the best that this evolving combat sport has to offer
and was punctuated with a last minute, gravity-defying kick
affectionately known as the “Showtime Kick”. In the
end, Pettis took the bout and the belt as the WEC roster was folded
into the almighty UFC’s roster.

Just shy of three years later, the UFC had itself a rematch of
one of the best title collisions MMA has ever known. Again,
Henderson had the belt and Pettis was looking to claim it. The
major difference, the first meeting was in Glendale, Arizona where
Henderson lives/trains and the second meeting was set for UFC 164
in Pettis’ hometown and current residence Milwaukee,
Wisconsin. The hype was quite high as the first fight was so great
and Henderson had yet to taste defeat since Pettis.

As the two took to the Octagon, the highlight reel striker
Pettis was greeted like he was already the champion and
Henderson’s aura of invincibility was unmistakable. It was
only natural to assume another 5 round war before it started, but
the bout ended so suddenly the crowd didn’t have a chance to
react.

After a few exchanges, Pettis got into a rhythm with some strong
kicks to the body. “Showtime” went for a Capoeira
cartwheel kick, which Henderson countered with a takedown and it
appeared like the first round would end on the floor right there.
But Pettis shot his legs up for an armbar attempt and Henderson
appeared to counter it. Then Pettis let go, ran to the cage, jumped
onto the cage, and celebrated while a confused crowd tried to
understand that their hometown hero just won the UFC lightweight
title. Even referee Herb Dean didn’t know exactly what
happened.

No controversy at all, just strange. Henderson didn’t
shoot up in protest. Apparently, Henderson verbally submitted and
Pettis heard/felt Henderson’s arm pop.

#7: Georges St-Pierre is not easily impressed

It was either the UFC’s greatest bit of trash talk ever or
the worst or the best.

At UFC 63, the boss of the Octagon’s welterweights Matt
Hughes took on the only man to defeat him in five years, B.J. Penn.
It was set to be a rematch of their January 2004 title fight, which
Penn won via armbar. Cut to the 2006 showdown, Penn nabbed the
first two rounds with the waning moments of the second stanza
showing Hughes defending Penn’s submission attempt(s).
Entering the third, Penn was visibly gassed or injured or
something. Meanwhile, Hughes was poised to pounce and did with a
takedown into side-mount with relentless punches that brought an
end to another successful title defense for Hughes.

While Hughes was busy celebrating with his team and his gold
belt, the UFC decided to bring Hughes’ next title rematch
into the cage, Georges St-Pierre. After a quick hug between past
and future opponents, Joe Rogan gave the mic to St-Pierre and
that’s when he told Hughes, “I was not impressed by
your performance.” DRAMA!

So benign and, yet, so cutting. Who would have ever guessed GSP
would dis Hughes or dis anybody and do it like that to his face. It
was a character breaking moment for St-Pierre, but his monotone,
robotic delivery made it more hilarious than hurtful.

#6: Diego Sanchez’s cross

“The Dream” more like “Vampire
Hunter”.

It seemed to be just your average entrance as Diego Sanchez
walked to the Octagon for his main event match-up with Jake
Ellenberger.
The
Ultimate Fighter
1 winner had an intense look on his face
chugging through the bowels of the Omaha Civic Auditorium, but
nothing seemed out of the ordinary until Sanchez came through the
curtain and into the seated arena.

BOOM! Sanchez has a cross!

From out of nowhere, Sanchez was armed with a shiny crucifix in
his extended right hand and was ready to wield it like he was Van
Helsing. Add to that, Sanchez was mumbling or talking to himself or
reciting a vampire curse.

#5: Bad Blood: Dana White vs. Tito Ortiz

When talking about “the” fight that never happened,
many will point to Brock Lesnar vs. Fedor Emelianenko, but
there’s an argument to be made for UFC President Dana White
vs. former UFC light-heavyweight champ Tito Ortiz.

In all seriousness, in 2007, an exhibition boxing bout was
billed between the unlikely pairing. Supposedly, it was all
Ortiz’s idea and was written into his UFC contract that he
would get to live out the “Fight Club” fantasy of
punching his boss in the face. IN THE FACE! What may have been
dreamed as a hard sparring session in the UFC’s gym during
office hours became a possibly pay-per-view with a
behind-the-scenes special when the Nevada State Athletic Commission
said it wanted to sanction it.

That odd 90 minute countdown following around White as he worked
out, lost weight, trained, and then some at 37 years old is the
only testament to this unfought fight. The bout’s unfortunate
end came with Ortiz no-showing the weigh-ins with no plans of it
being rescheduled.

Why didn’t the boxing match happen? Maybe Ortiz realized
beating up his boss isn’t the best idea or maybe the prospect
of White having any success in the bout would make Ortiz lose a ton
of integrity as a former champ and potential future Hall of
Famer.

#4: Team Nogueira and Team Mir eating each other’s
bodily fluids

The 8th season of
The
Ultimate Fighter
took the usual prank war to an unbelievable
disgusting and cringe-inducing level. Most seasons, there are a
guys messing with each other’s clothes or beds or their
sleep, but messing with a man’s food was verboten. That was
until Team Nogueira and Team Mir entered the house.

The first team to strike was Mir’s. Apparently, Tom Lawlor
had been ordering fruit platters and would often come home to find
them partially eaten. The platters were the kind where the fruit
are packaged in water. Lawlor and some of his degenerate teammates
decided to set a trap by removing the water and replacing with
their piss. And by “piss”, I’m talking about a
cocktail of several men’s urine.

Spoiler alert, we watched several members from Team Nogueira eat
fruit that had marinated in the other team’s pee. Later, Team
Mir reveals the horrible truth to Team Nogueira.

To retaliate, Phillipe Nover mentioned that someone on Team Mir
was eating the sushi roll platters he had been ordering. The
degenerates on Nogueira’s team decide that someone should put
a different bodily fluid on the sushi for that Mir teammate to
unknowingly eat.

Spoiler alert, we watched Dave Kaplan from Team Mir eat sushi
that had been laced with Kyle Kingsbury’s ejaculate. Later,
they all laughed at Kaplan while UFC fans wondered, where’s
the cagefighting?

#3: Wanderlei Silva wants to do what to Chuck
Liddell?

Give the guy a break, it’s not his first language.

In the greatest English as a second language moment ever,
“The Axe-Murderer” Wanderlei Silva told the world that
he had plans of doing something a lot more lurid than trying to
knockout Chuck Liddell inside the Octagon. And I quote, “I
want to f*** … I want to fight with Chuck.”

GLORIOUS!

If the Freudian slip wasn’t amazing enough on its own, at
the time, a lot (maybe most) of UFC fans had no idea who was the
bald man with the accent was, what his Pride t-shirt was really
referencing, and they definitely didn’t know why he was
allowed to talk about such sexual depravities with their UFC
light-heavyweight champ in the holy Octagon. So many questions for
fans watching UFC 61, which Liddell didn’t even fight at.

In 2006, Silva was incredibly popular in Japan fighting for
Pride and was their middleweight champ with a fan-friendly frenzied
striking style, but Silva was just some random guy to those in
attendance who paid to see Ken Shamrock vs. Tito Ortiz II. And not
only did they not get why he had the pleasure of fighting Liddell,
they certainly had a WTF moment when Silva said he wanted to F the
champ.

To top it off, Silva didn’t fight Liddell when they said
he would, so Silva wouldn’t be seen in the UFC for over a
year as if the fateful words from UFC 61 were just a weird
dream.

#2: The Upset

Frankly, there’s only one underdog Cinderella story that
ever needs to be mentioned in UFC history: Matt Serra over Georges
St-Pierre. No one believed it could happen and unless your name is
Matt Serra or Ray Longo, you’re lying through your teeth.

At the onset of
The
Ultimate Fighter season 4
labeled “The Comeback”,
it was explained that these former UFC fighters were getting a
chance to not only win the show’s tournament and the
contract, but they were also winning a shot at their
division’s UFC title. The two weightclasses were welter and
middle with respective champions St-Pierre and Anderson Silva
waiting for the show winners.

The first winner turned title fight match-up was Travis Lutter
vs. Silva at UFC 67. Weirdly enough, Lutter showed up to those
weigh-ins with a shaved head and a couple pounds overweight. The
extra LBs nullified the bout for the belt and it turned into your
average shot at Silva. Actually, Lutter did quite well and got
mount on Silva, but, soon enough in the second round, Lutter was
finished by elbows while stuck in a triangle choke.

The second winner turned title fight match-up was undersized
Serra vs. the then pound-for-pound best in the company, St-Pierre,
at UFC 69. It was a million to one shot that the predominantly BJJ
oriented Serra would be able to take the much bigger GSP down and
submit him, which seemed like Serra’s only hope to analysts
and fans everywhere. Strangely enough, it didn’t take long at
all for Serra to walk into the Octagon and put a few fists upside
the champ’s head in the most shocking knockout in the sport
ever.

With the referee attending to the then former champ, Serra
calmly walked away from the felled St-Pierre and did a one-armed
cartwheel and proceeded to celebrate with a phenomenal amount of
“oh, I guess you doubted that the little guy from Long Island
could do it” faces.

#1: The man with one boxing glove

His name was Art Jimmerson.

He was a professional boxer and he was worried about protecting
his jab hand. That’s the simple answer to “why?”
that everyone had and will continue having each and every time they
view that UFC 1 bout between Jimmerson and UFC Hall of Famer Royce
Gracie. But there’s so much more to it than that because they
say a picture is worth a thousand words. For Jimmerson, that
picture is him with a big red boxing glove about to fight a
gi-wearing soon-to-be martial arts revolutionary.

Gracie is a legend and it all started with the 6th degree Gracie
jiu-jitsu blackbelt taking on Jimmerson in the quarter-finals of
the UFC 1 tournament. Gracie went on to win the tournament with
three submission wins that night and, funnily enough, the man with
one boxing glove lasted the longest, was finished by the least, and
never once threw a punch with that one glove.

Jimmerson didn’t know what he was getting himself into. It
was a bare-knuckle match and that made him worry about protecting
his money making lead hand for his boxing career. The right hand he
left free with just some tape around the wrist because Jimmerson
did understand that there could be grappling. But “One
Glove” didn’t know any grappling and that showed
immediately.

Gracie got the fight to the ground fairly quickly with some
probing front kicks followed by a tackle takedown. Gracie went
right into side control, which no doubt Jimmerson didn’t know
the name of let alone how to escape from it. Gracie moved to mount,
Jimmerson tried to get up, he couldn’t, Gracie hit him with a
couple palm strikes, Jimmerson tried to get up again and
couldn’t, so Jimmerson tapped.

End of fight, but the beginning of countless conversations about
the UFC starting with, “Remember that guy who had one boxing
glove? What the eff was that about?”