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The Difference Between Throwing a Fight and Simply Quitting in One

Yesterday Sean Salmon probed some of his own dark places in a first-person column for MMA Junkie about some of the ways he has screwed up his life in the past.  One of those ways was just this past June when he fought Allan Weickert in a small promotion in Ohio, and he didn’t quite have his mind right.  Salmon wrote that he was a paid sparring partner for the UK’s Wolfslair team at the time and was worried that he might get hurt in the fight and be unable to return to England and keep earning money in the gym.  So when he found himself caught in an armbar in the second-round, Salmon says that he “defended it (only to prove to myself that he couldn’t get it), and then I put my arm back in to give him the win so that I could return to England, healthy.”

If I need to tell you that this admission didn’t sit well with MMA fans, then you obviously don’t know any MMA fans.  What’s worse, now the Ohio Athletic Commission is looking into the matter and there’s even some suspension talk.  Some people will tell you that what Salmon did – or what he said he did (more on that in a moment) – amounts to “throwing” a fight.  Those people are wrong.  What Salmon did was give up.  He quit.  He failed to do everything he could to win.  While that’s not going to help his already-ailing career any, and while telling everybody about it is going to help even less, it’s not illegal or even unethical.  It’s just sad, and kind of dumb.

The difference between throwing a fight and quitting in one is all about premeditation and motive.  If you go into a fight planning to lose in order to reap some form of reward, that’s throwing a fight.  If you go into a fight with a messed up mind and a general lack of motivation that leads to you tapping out when you really didn’t have to, that’s just a sign that you either need to reevaluate or find a new line of work.

There is another possible explanation.  It could be that Salmon just got beat that night.  Maybe the account of him escaping and then giving up his arm is totally embellished, but it makes him feel better.  As long as he can tell himself that he quit, at least he doesn’t have to ask himself whether his opponent was simply the better fighter that night.

Either way, unless anyone can prove that Salmon gained something – money, an opportunity that was promised to him, a trash bag full of bootleg DVD’s – by purposefully losing the fight, you can’t say he threw it.  You can say he quit.  You can say he took the easy way out.  You can say he’s not too bright for telling everyone about it, thus somehow hurting his career even worse than a loss to a 6-6 fighter normally would.  But you can’t say he did anything illegal.  He has so little going for him right now.  At least give him that.


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Da Spied Her- September 4, 2009 at 10:56 am
Mmmmmm, smoked salmon!
BobLoblaw- September 4, 2009 at 10:46 am
what's most important here is this - who gives a shit about sean salmon? the only reason anyone knows who this clown is is because he was the roly poly, out-of-shape doughboy that rashad evans KTFO'd. it was a cool kick to the head, but i was just complaining earlier today that the UFC pushes/promotes rashad often by using the clip of him taking salmon's head off with that big kick. my point is, it would be a lot more impressive if evans had knocked somebody out who had more than one pro mma fight under his belt with that head kick. the talend difference was so bad that it looked like salmon was some chump they grabbed on the street and offered $300 to fight on tv.
NateGetsIrate- September 4, 2009 at 8:52 am
Yeah, Sean didn't throw the fight. But he didn't quit either. He lost. And he's being an asshole by trying to diminish some no-name's win. That's worse than pulling an Andy Wang.
KillDozer- September 4, 2009 at 8:28 am
don't worry guys, everything is cool. It's just 831 Son has an aggressive approach of getting a date on the Internet.
Fedor vs. Bas- September 4, 2009 at 5:53 am
That sad sad quitter. I think another head-kick from Rashad is in order.
Jeffro- September 4, 2009 at 5:18 am
I think he quit and not threw the fight. Not only that, but he openly admits to being a terrible houseguest. What a travisty.

831 - you have a chip on your shoulder and your insecurity is showing. Do something productive. You'll feel better about yourself soon.
Clyde- September 4, 2009 at 5:16 am
Very nice Danomite.

I'd love to see the footage of that, I just can't begin to imagine what it looks like to pull out of an armbar, and then put your arm back in. It's like a boxer slipping past a huge haymaker, then deciding to headbutt the ring post because he decides that's the better idea.

How can putting yourself into a position where your arm can be broken be less likely to cause injury than just continuing the fight which you have a chance of winning? Fuckwit.
Chri534.- September 4, 2009 at 1:56 am
What an insightful conversation.
JiMMA- September 3, 2009 at 9:45 pm
Quid pro quo, gentleman.
831 Son- September 3, 2009 at 9:39 pm
Yea it reflects the 0 % of homosexuality that I have dumb ass. Shut the fuck up, you obviously don't know a thing. Just because your mom tells you that the people calling you faggots are just insecure about their own sexuality, doesnt mean shes right, shes just trying to make you feel better about yourself so you dont commit suicide. But by all means, please, kill yourself FAGGOT.
KillDozer- September 3, 2009 at 9:32 pm
@831 Son
you know that calling people faggots only reflects your own homosexuality?
831 Son- September 3, 2009 at 9:23 pm
Hahaha KillDozer and WuTangClan, you guys got a little butt buddy team going on I see. Well losers, you pussies would never have the balls to call anyone out on anything besides on the internet. You faggots would get rocked, know that in your heart girls. Keep crying too, it makes my day more enjoyable when some 140 pound little retards think they are bad ass.
Danxxx- September 3, 2009 at 9:05 pm speechless
Smitty- September 3, 2009 at 8:21 pm
Seoul Brother- September 3, 2009 at 7:41 pm
Dana, you're absolutely right that everyone makes mistakes, but this bitch is a goddamned waste of carbon. If you're involved in any kind of profession with a grievous risk to your personal health and you don't have anything to fall back on, what does that make you? A sad little crippled twat.

Sean Salmon may have been thinking pragmatically in evaluating how a debilitating injury could have affected his job as a human punching bag. Someone smarter would have planned for the possibility that they could get fucked up and need time to recover, but Sean Salmon gave up. That's just plain fucking insulting to the guy he was fighting, those in attendance, and anybody else who thought that he was little more than a barely cogent punching bag.

And what's worse is that by being such a dumbass to admit to his COWARDICE, he basically shot his chances of being taken seriously by any promoter.
scumbag- September 3, 2009 at 6:59 pm
yeah thats pretty lame of salmon to try and take away a good win by the other guy with an excuse. reminds of when tim sylvia said his back was hurt right after couture killed him
KillDozer- September 3, 2009 at 6:33 pm
you are 100% correct. That 831 Son bitch is a filthy piece of shit.

Btw, was it Salmon that gave Rashad Evans his first highlight real?
Catalyst8487- September 3, 2009 at 6:32 pm
He could've just won the fucking fight then gone back to training at the gym. Double WIN!

What a fucking tool.
fightfan- September 3, 2009 at 6:13 pm
It is hilarious how many excuses nd shit this guy id full of. So much potheticness here, it would take all day to cover it all.

But one of the MANY assanine things Salmon said was "he was only a 6-6 fighter, so he should be able to get a easy win and go back to England uninjured"

ONLY a 6-6 fighter??? Salmon fought cans until SOMEHOW he got a chance at the UFC. WE all know what happened from there. Salmon was 10-1 when he started facing better competition. And what is the douchebag's record since he as fought better fighters????????????????

Oh yeah it is 7-7. But Salmon got the retardedness to talk about how Wieckert was an "EASY" opponent because of his 6-6 record.....WELL MAYBE Wieckert looked at Salmon and figured the SAME DAMN thing.

EPIC FAIL = Salmon career
danomite- September 3, 2009 at 6:12 pm
This just in: Salmon also saw that kick from Rashad coming. He recognized it, realized he could block it, then ate it cause he remembered he left the stove on.
Dana Mother Fcuking White- September 3, 2009 at 6:10 pm
Jesus, cut the guy some slack. People screw up from time to time.

Do you know what kind of man never makes mistakes? One who NEVER DOES a damn thing! Most MMA fans fall into that category. They spend so much time projecting onto these fighters that they forget that they're real people.
mondooh- September 3, 2009 at 5:33 pm
Soo I was just on the Fight Schedule page of this website, and uhhhh it looks like I've been the only one on there in about almost a year, just thought you all might like to know and perhaps get off your asses and update it, perhaps.
Ohh and Sean Salmon is a twatwaffle, and smells like a composite of old fish and quitter.
ihateemo- September 3, 2009 at 5:29 pm
I don't really have anything to say about the article except that I agree with it 100%, especially the "keep your dumb fucking mouth shut" bit.

I feel bad for the guy but, oh man, he left himself wide open for internet head kicks after what he said.
WuTangClan- September 3, 2009 at 5:28 pm
Why dont you fight him 831 Son, get knocked out by a pussy

I dont even like Sean Salmon, you`re just a filthy scabby cunt muscle who can only talk shit, drink bleach immediately and make your parents proud
Levi Jones- September 3, 2009 at 5:19 pm
Salmon should just quit. The guy has had some of the most brutal KO losses ever. Now this? He should just retire before they suspend him for losing on purpose. Save everyone some time and money.

P.S. Is the comment of the week thing a trick of some sort? Never heard back from you guys.