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This Just In: Prison Fights Are Scary

(Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)

If you’ve ever sat around and wondered whether your favorite MMA fighters would be total bad-asses in prison, or whether the lack of rules and weight classes would relegate them to being someone’s one true love, congratulations, you’re a total weirdo with too much time on your hands. 

But if you’d like to hear about how prison fights and MMA bouts are different from someone who has experienced both, you should really check out MMA Fanhouse’s fascinating interview with undefeated Strikeforce fighter/former meth addict and convicted felon Lyle Beerbohm.  He’s fighting Duane “Bang” Ludwig at Friday’s Strikeforce Challengers event after having discovered MMA while in prison:

“[O]ne day I was sitting in prison watching The Ultimate Fighter reality show on TV. And I was like, "Are you kidding me? These guys are on TV making money for fighting? That’s what I want to do when I get out."
So I wrote my dad a letter and told him, "I want to be a cage fighter when I get out," and he was like, "Oh, no. Lyle must have gotten meth in prison." He thought that was such a crazy idea. But when I got out he picked me up from prison and he thought I looked pretty good, and I told him we had to stop at an MMA gym — right there on that drive home from prison. So we stopped at a gym, I told the trainer I wanted to be a cage fighter, and he gave me a chance with it and I did really well.
Eight days later I had my first amateur MMA fight and I won, and then in the next nine months I did 12 amateur fights and went 12-0. At that time I turned pro, and now I’m 9-0 as a pro, 12-0 as an amateur and I finished 20 of my 21 fights. And now I’m fighting Duane Ludwig on Friday.”

That’s right, this dude couldn’t even wait until he got home from prison before beginning his MMA career.  Those of you who have watched enough “Intervention” might be thinking that this is a classic addictive personality at work, and he’s simply switched his focus from drugs to MMA.  That’s probably true, but so what?  At least it’ll keep him out of jail, which is apparently not a fun place to throwdown:

Were there a lot of fights in prison?
Yeah. Of course, it’s a lot different — when you fight in prison, you’re fighting pretty much to live. It’s life or death. When you get in a fight in prison, it’s an experience that I wouldn’t want to put anybody through. A fight in prison is a very, very scary thing. You never know what’s going to happen, if the guy’s going to come back and shank you, if you’re going to get jumped. I got in a few fights in prison and I won all my fights, and then everybody knew not to mess with me, and I just hung by myself.

Well, I know who I’m rooting for this Friday night.  The guy who people knew not to mess with in prison.

Cagepotato Comments

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frankpickle- June 17, 2009 at 10:21 pm
It almost looks like Dr. Phil is showcasing his "fancy-pants". He seems to be saying "look at these, let their beauty suck you in and mesmerize you into staring at his c@ck". If my grandma made me those I would choke her out and put them over her head and then Karate chop her Machida style-is that too harsh?
frankpickle- June 17, 2009 at 10:17 pm

F-ing awesome point! Nothing like a little insult to injury to ruin your already f-ed up day.
agentsmith- June 17, 2009 at 11:21 am
The main difference is when you get KO'd in a cage-fight, nobody rapes you while you're unconscious.
Clue-by-Four- June 17, 2009 at 9:34 am
When did Dr.Phil become a ref?
meanfinger- June 17, 2009 at 8:56 am
wow.. what a bunch of haters! i seen him fight at the tacoma dome, he's not a push over.
J-Dog- June 17, 2009 at 8:08 am
I wonder if he met Dan Quinn when he was doing the meth thing.... just sayin
Peppermint Nightmare- June 17, 2009 at 6:31 am
Shep is absolutely right. This guy is full of shit.
If they were letting the inmates watch TUF, then it was definitely a minimum security prison. You don't have to worry much at all about getting jumped or shanked in minimum because everybody knows that if they fuck around they get sent to maximum....and even the biggest asshole fuckup on Earth realizes that's a baaaaaad thing.
eelcozy- June 17, 2009 at 12:54 am
I'm assuming MrMiyagi is my friend, but maybe not. I met FancyPants at Moses Lake and I also saw his fight at Strikeforce at the Dome. He is fucking awesome and I will never root against him, but I won't be surprised if he loses this one. GO FANCYPANTS!

PS: He says his Grandma made his "fancypants."
Daddy_jeffy- June 17, 2009 at 12:06 am
I've seen three episodes of Oz and prison is no joke.
Perma- June 17, 2009 at 12:02 am
I too met and watched Lyle fight a few times, he was not in minimum security prison, he was in Walla Walla State(where I happen to live) This prison is kinda famous a few songs written about it and quite a few serial killers are on death row there (like green river killer)

Lyle's mother makes his fight shorts for him.

I have a couple friends who train at syk jitju in Spokane with Lyle and all say he is a nice humble guy and is a gym rat 1st one in last one out.

Gl Ludwig yout gonna need it!
MrMiyagi- June 16, 2009 at 11:08 pm
i met this guy at my fight in eastern Washington. incredibly nice guy. im always rooting for lyle.
llbunbaoll- June 16, 2009 at 10:17 pm
god dam it cage potato..u had me going der. i thought we had an organization that helds mma bouts just for prisoners, it could be like Undisputed!(movie)
Maitreyan disciple- June 16, 2009 at 8:22 pm
Fancy Pants has a good shot at taking down Bang. Don't sleep on him, its a good story that inspires us to be better!
Aenarion- June 16, 2009 at 7:11 pm
Duane Ludwig is a fucking badass... not gonna be like fighting some amateur dude or some prison loser. Ludwig can straight take his head off.
Titos Head- June 16, 2009 at 6:39 pm
quote from roadhouse...."I use to fuck guys like you in prison!!"
831 Son- June 16, 2009 at 6:31 pm
Everyone says they won every fight in prison. He could be telling the truth but Im just sayin, people lie alot coming out of prison thinking they are the shit. However, most people can't throw a punch so I dont doubt him completely.
NECROPHYTE- June 16, 2009 at 6:26 pm
Lyle Beerbohm winner by Soap-Bar.
T BONE- June 16, 2009 at 5:46 pm
wow thats a pretty impressive record so far. good on him for getting off meth and beating the living piss out of ppl instead lol :D
Bootylam- June 16, 2009 at 5:22 pm
I'm with Sheps. The first thing I thought when I read that was "Unfair!". In the prisons I've been in... uh, heard about... they only let the inmates watch nature and shit like that. I guess it angries up the blood to see fighting. Or sports, women,and music videos.
Cookie Monster- June 16, 2009 at 5:14 pm
those shorts are the fuckin shit! where can i get me a pair? aoki ain't got shit on you buddy
frankpickle- June 16, 2009 at 4:59 pm
Everyone is always undefeated. Apparently no one ever loses in this world even though the world is full of losers-ironic.

Old_Bald_and_Irish- June 16, 2009 at 4:59 pm
@ vyapaar

"He'll probably get ktfo in the first round"


...wouldn't that be the shit!

Sheps- June 16, 2009 at 4:50 pm
I love how he had to throw in how he won all his fights in prison, but then again they have TV privilages at his minimum security prison, so 9/10 he was fending off attacks from petty thieves and drunk drivers
vyapaar- June 16, 2009 at 4:45 pm
He'll probably get ktfo in the first round