In the third episode of “The Ultimate Fighter” season 10, Roy “Big Country” Nelson was selected by coach Rashad “Sugar” Evans to fight Kimbo Slice in a 2-round battle. Although Kimbo has been constantly criticized by mixed martial arts (MMA) fans due to his lack of overall MMA skills, everyone was still eager to see what he could do to the MMA veteran.
Would Kimbo stun the world or would Nelson prove that he has the tools and experience to acquire a victory over the Internet-sensation?
In episode 3 of TUF 10, Nelson defeated Kimbo via TKO (strikes) at 2:01 of round 2. Toward the end of the show, UFC President Dana White admits that he respects Kimbo’s efforts and encourages him to continue training hard throughout the rest of the episode. He also stated that an injury by any of the fighters would allow Kimbo back into the tournament.
“My plan was, I was going to stand with him as long as I could. Because I wasn’t really going to shoot on him, just because that’s what he was expecting. And then if he came in flurrying, I was just going to bodylock him, take him down and crucifix him. You know how Babe Ruth used to point to the fence and say, “I’m going to hit this home run”? I did exactly what I wanted: take no hits, get it to the ground and just win…Actually, he’s really good at the boxing premise of the bobbing and weaving, but when we sparred earlier (during the coach evaluations), he was easy to hit. For the most part, you just want to make sure you don’t get hit, especially with Kimbo. After watching the fight — I didn’t even throw a right hand, so I didn’t even hit him with my best shot. I didn’t even really jab him. I was just waiting for him to come in, because I knew he was going to come in swinging and flurrying, and I knew I was going to come in and bob and weave, and take him down or get to a bodylock. I did exactly what I wanted to do; it worked to my advantage and I got the “W”…He’s just super-strong. A lot of people don’t realize he’s a 245-pound guy, except when he’s on different types of medications (that) bring his weight down. But the thing is, I like to do the wear-and-tear because I do jiu-jitsu. It’s not about getting the fight all the way to the ground right away. It’s basically make the guy tired, make him fatigued and then take him down. And then work for your position first before you do something stupid…His takedown defense is good to a certain degree, but when you’re at this high level, I just know that m(y offense) is a little bit better. There are some guys I know, probably wouldn’t be able to take him down. But for me, I was just working for my position, got my position. And once I had my position, I made him create movement and then I’d take him down…For him to keep going out, he would have to go out the back door (i.e., sliding under the mounted opponent) and go kind of in the north-south position. But once I had my lock he wasn’t going to, because I used my hip to put him back down on the mat. I could have stayed in mount and finished him there with elbows and punches, but my game plan was to get to the crucifix, and once I got to the crucifix, finish the fight there. First round was 44 punches to the face, and then (referee) Herb Dean doesn’t know how to ref, but we’ve seen that before. And then the next round was 22 punches…I was surprised. You could even see me yelling at Herb Dean, “Come on, ref.” But the thing is, there’s a lot of people; there’s a lot of money. Kimbo’s the only one that I know that had an entourage there; he actually had his family there, his management, while the rest of us kind of had to suffer. The UFC made, we’ll say, different concessions for Kimbo. I think he had a media room…Kimbo’s definitely, I guess we’ll say, special. I don’t see the specialness fighting-wise, but more for TV-wise. He puts butts in the seats. So I think it was more that Herb Dean was afraid to lose his job, because there’s a lot of people with a lot of money that can have a lot of influence with his career…It’s kind of funny, because as much as Dana was saying, “He did just enough to win,” I’ll answer that directly as, “That’s right. I did exactly what I wanted to do: took no damage; won the fight. That’s everything I wanted to do when I was out in the house, so I think I did pretty good for myself. Dana didn’t like it because I just killed the moneymaker. That’s the only thing I can think of. Yeah, the executive producer’s hanging out with Kimbo’s entourage all mad and disappointed because I won, but little did the executive producer know that I’m an actual fighter — an MMA fighter, not just a barbecue brawler…I don’t think I was really that tired. My mouth (made me look) really fatigued, but I just know I had a lot more gas than Kimbo did…I’ve been hit hard (before). As soon as I got hit, I got my clinch, just like I what I wanted, because he was close enough to grab. Kimbo even tried to throw a knee, tapped his knee, next thing you know, I’m in side control, going back to the crucifix, back to finishing the fight again. It’s pretty black and white, as in an ABC game: You go to A, go to B, go to C, go to finish.”