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“Ask Dan” #1: Dan Severn Still Wants Coleman and Shamrock, Will Likely Retire Next Year

(Severn and Shamrock: They were like the Michael Jackson and Prince of big, white grapplers who competed in early ’90s no-holds-barred matches.)

Happy Movember, everybody! In honor of the hairiest month of the year, we convinced UFC Hall of Famer Dan Severn to write a weekly column for For the first installment, he plucked some topics from our Facebook page, but he’s up for answering anything about his life, career, and moustache, so drop your own suggestions in the comments section. Visit and Dan’s Facebook page for more Beast-related updates, and join the CagePotato Movember team if you want to help support a good cause!

Matthew Poulin asks: How many fights do you still want?

Dan Severn: It’s not so much how many fights I want to have. I want specific fights right now. I’ve had some verbal offers but haven’t had the opportunity to bring some of these matches to life. Two particular matches I’m still interested are ones with Mark Coleman and Ken Shamrock. Realistically, I think that 2012 will be my final year as an MMA competitor. So whatever gets done gets done; whatever doesn’t, I’ll have to learn to live with I guess.

Matthew Gingerfunky Hoggart asks: Do you regret taking your last fight?

I can’t regret taking the fight but it didn’t happen at the best time in my career. What the fans see is one aspect but they don’t have a clue as to what I endured for 3 ½ to 4 months before the fight in terms of taking care of my father. Prior to my last fight, my siblings and I were providing home hospice-type care for my father and since I have the most flexible schedule, I was the primary caregiver during the normal working day times. On weekends I would leave late Friday and would be back late Sunday to resume my duties. And I would not change that for the world.

Todd Levin asks: How did you come up with “The Severn”? It’s a very useful wrestling move that is not widely known.

Todd, I don’t even know what you’re asking me. If it’s a technique that you think I created, I’m not sure what you’re referring to specifically. I apologize. I do so many seminars and people are blown away by the mechanics of what I show. The unfortunate thing about a lot of the things I do is it’s not fan friendly because the spectators cannot see my opponent’s pain. But trust me; most people are blown away by the amount of pain that I can inflict. And there will come a day when they will realize what a 53 year old guy can really do.

Ben Silverfox Latham asks: I’d like to know what you think about the way the UFC has changed since you were in it all those years ago, and while you were in it did you ever think it could become so huge?

Okay well Ben, it had to change or else we would be thinking about it in past tense. There was a lot pressure that was coming down from athletic commissions, legislators and politicians who were looking to change the “No Holds Barred” style. The concessions that were made have created the byproduct that is mixed martial arts. As far as the excitement level and the potential for greatness…after watching the first two UFCs on VHS, as I watched other friends inside my living room react to what they were watching, I knew that there was something there. In some ways our society has advanced, but when it boils right down to it, there is a primal, prehistoric captivation about violent acts for people. For example, why does everybody slow down when they see an accident? Nobody admits that they want to see anything – even to themselves — but they do.

When I was watching in the beginning, I was able to view the pain. So as I was watching, I wasn’t watching as a fan to see what kind of outfit the fighters were coming out in or what their walkout music was. I was looking at the actual mechanics. What were the competitors actually bringing to the table…are they strikers? Are they grapplers? I think that fighters see things totally different. You study weakness and strengths of the competitors compared to your own set of skills.

Mike Skytte asks: What do you think of the development of today’s fighters?

Fighters will always develop according to the rules. For example, if they were to make any rule change – regardless of what it may be – you would see the athletes evolve in a different direction. Take the example of time limits. If there was unlimited time or if there were stalemates, that would change how athletes would prepare. The rules really dictate what the fighters are able to do and train for. Certain things that I teach right now are that you are able to exploit some of the rules in the way that you attack or counter-attack in the heat of the action, if the way that you apply the attack is disguised. There is black and white in the sport but there is also a lot of gray.

Cagepotato Comments

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XENOPHON- November 4, 2011 at 9:28 am
Dan..what changes does the UFC need to make, so as to stop looking so fake to most fans?
myklhoey- November 3, 2011 at 11:47 am
@ rwilsonr
lol forest ran like a lill b!t$#, he said his jaw broke and wanted medical attenon right away, i think it may hav been do to the fact he just got toyed wit,
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:45 am
Have you ever seen/been involved in/know anyone involved in any worked fights? Was this ever common practice with any promotions you have fought for?
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:41 am
What are your thoughts on the current owners of the UFC?
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:38 am
Which fighter today do you think is most impressive?
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:37 am
Can you tell us about a couple of fights that were especially memorable for you in you long career, preferably ones outside of your early UFC days?
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:36 am
Forrest Griffin's first professional fight was a loss to you. Did he run out of the cage crying after you beat him?
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:27 am
Is it insulting to you that danomite just recycled questions he asked Gary Goodridge, instead of asking you new questions? Also, is it a little disturbing that danomite was asking so many mustache-related questions to Gary?
RwilsonR- November 3, 2011 at 11:25 am
Dan, do you think the government owes you a significant tax refund due to your sizable charitable donation to "Movember", since you've been raising awareness with your mustache for a lot longer than the rest of these Johnny-come-latelys?
Viva Hate- November 3, 2011 at 7:15 am
Dan, who do you trust more, the spammer of an MMA news site or the Nigerian king who just emailed me that he has a million dollars for me if I give me my banking info? I am going with the Nigerian king.
FightZen- November 3, 2011 at 6:09 am
@Myklhoey - What?
KarmaAteMyCat- November 3, 2011 at 6:01 am
Im raising money for a CP based Fundraiser assclown. It's all over the front page dumbass... get over yourself.
myklhoey- November 3, 2011 at 5:31 am
@ rsparrow well thank you fan of yours as well
RSparrow- November 2, 2011 at 10:50 pm
Hate you Karma, quit asking for money.
RSparrow- November 2, 2011 at 10:39 pm
^Love this guy
myklhoey- November 2, 2011 at 8:23 pm
@ danomite
LOL o bro that cot me so off gaurd i busted out lafin and woke my roommate up, hay karma i will be in delaware the nite you fite, i really eanted to see you win but look forwatd to hearin about it on hear
KarmaAteMyCat- November 2, 2011 at 6:39 pm
Aww well thats funny because the thread very much so still exists and it completely disagree's with you. Nice try bad troll better luck next time.
Jesus Frijoles- November 2, 2011 at 6:21 pm
How much would you charge to suplex James Toney?
smellypiratehooker- November 2, 2011 at 6:00 pm
Similar to Chael's callout. would you face Don Frye to a " Losers mustache leaves town"
smellypiratehooker- November 2, 2011 at 5:52 pm
If you had to pick the greatest question to ever be asked what would it be and would you please answer it
danomite- November 2, 2011 at 5:44 pm
13. Did Joe Son try to rape you backstage at UFC 4?
danomite- November 2, 2011 at 5:41 pm
Okay, so I stupidly asked my questions in the last 'ask gary' column so I'll repaste them here:
1. Have you worn man-panties for all 124 of your fights? Personally, I don’t see why everyone doesn’t wear them.
2. 1 KO loss in your first 122 fights, and now 2 in your last 2 fights. what’s up with that?
3. I’m 0-0 as a professional and amateur. My entire martial arts experience consists of 6 months of youth(not me, I was 26) karate classes at the Y. Will you fight me? And if so, will you let me win?
4. Considering you fight roughly 52 times a year, do you make enough money to live on just from your fight purse even though you fight for regional promotions?
5. Did you steal the mustache from Freddy Mercury?
6. Who do you still talk to from the early UFC days?
7. Are there any heavyweights in the UFC today that you think you could beat, even at 53 years old?
8. Are you afraid to fight Nick Diaz?
9. Do you get more banged up from MMA or pro wrestling?
10. Wikipedia says you've trained some well known fighters like Rashad and Sean Sherk among others. Who was your best student?
11. Pound for Pound rankings? Complete bullshit right?
12. Are you a Viltrumite?
Viva Hate- November 2, 2011 at 5:32 pm
Dan, is it true you are actually retro porn star Dick Rambone?
Do you have any Paul Varelans-esqu stories about your time in the WWE?
itsgalf- November 2, 2011 at 4:54 pm
Dan, why did you totally not answer Ben Silverfox Latham's question?
KarmaAteMyCum- November 2, 2011 at 4:26 pm
Hey Dan, you want a handjob?