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Ken Shamrock Attempts to Justify the Spectacle His Career Has Become, Almost Weirdly Succeeds

(Ken Shamrock: haggard as he wanna be.)

Our boy Michael David Smith over at MMA Fanhouse conducted an interview with Ken Shamrock that can most charitably be described as ‘contentious.’  Give MDS credit, he doesn’t shy away from the tough questions, and neither does Shamrock.  After making vague remarks about why CBS refuses to work with him, Shamrock admits he is a fighter, “not a mastermind,” which naturally is news to us all.

But where things get interesting is when MDS presses Shamrock on his most recent sad display of something resembling fighting against 380-pound Ross Clifton.  Shamrock admitted that he only took that fight because he didn’t want to fight someone who might have reasonable chance of actually beating him, since this was just a ploy to set up a fight with Tank Abott, which, get this, may be on PAY-PER-VIEW.  Leave it to MDS to ask the questions you’re thinking:

But you think it is possible that you fighting Tank is something that could do well on pay-per-view?
I would absolutely say yeah. Especially since I fought some fat guy, out of shape, no good, and it got over 300,000 hits on YouTube, OK? So tell me. Some big, fat, out of shape, fat guy, is going to do bigger numbers than somebody fighting a main event fighter, like [Ken's adopted brother] Frank Shamrock and Nick Diaz, who probably won’t even get those numbers. And you’re saying that your opinion — which I didn’t know writers had one, I thought you were just supposed to write the story — is that because I did that, we got those numbers, we shouldn’t be going out there and having those fans watch that, even though they’re turning on the tube and they’re pushing in the numbers on the computer to watch that thing happen?

Do you think Ken Shamrock vs. Tank Abbott is a better fight than Frank Shamrock vs. Nick Diaz?
Absolutely. What’s the difference? Frank is taking a guy, Nick Diaz, who is a 155-pound fighter. He’s going up to 179 pounds, he hasn’t fought in a very long time, and get in the ring and fight this guy, and he’s going to come to me and say, "You’re washed up, and you shouldn’t be fighting." And he ducked fighting me.

That’s right, Shamrock-Abbott is a better fight than Diaz-Shamrock (the better one)…at least in the mind of Ken Shamrock.

Ken goes on to say that MDS is entitled to his opinion about these sideshow fights, but plenty of people still want to see him fight.  He almost immediately reverses this position and says he didn’t know writers had opinions, that he thought they just wrote the stories, and finishes by continuing to use the number of people willing to watch for free on the internet as he degrades himself in these fights as a justification for continuing to participate in them.

Here’s the thing: Shamrock actually makes a decent point.  If he wants to continue fighting, and if there are still people willing to watch him (regardless of what their motivations might be) he has a right.  No one can make him stop as long as he’s reasonably healthy.  And just because he can’t fight, you know, very well any more, that’s not a justification for insisting that he quit altogether if he doesn’t want to.

He’s right when he says that it’s selfish of fans to want him to stop fighting in order to preserve whatever legacy they’d like to remember him for.  That is selfish, but that’s life as a pro athlete.  The fans get to be selfish.  They’re the ones paying, after all. 

Cagepotato Comments

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PinkySlayer- February 21, 2009 at 9:30 am
I can't believe y'all didn't point out that Shammy's reasoning for why the Tank/Ken fight would sell well on YouTube.
"But you think it is possible that you fighting Tank is something that could do well on pay-per-view?"
"I would absolutely say yeah. Especially since I fought some fat guy, out of shape, no good, and it got over 300,000 hits on YouTube, OK?"
Listen asshole, I also saw a video of a fat black woman dragging her pimp boyfriend down the street by his hair on YouTube. CBS isn't contacting them either.
Palma- February 20, 2009 at 7:34 pm
Who wrote this garbage? I mean MDS's interview was very good and let Ken make an ass out of himself. But who ever wrote this blog better be a real MMA fighter the way he is looking down his nose at Shamrock (or any fighter for that matter).

You are pretty cool shitting on 45 year old fighters, ridding the coat tails of other bloggers, and not attributing your name to the piece... piece of shit.
Phunnybonz- February 20, 2009 at 7:13 pm
Netterbog get's comment of the week in my book. That had me rofl!!
Krazy Kracker- February 20, 2009 at 3:46 pm
Someone did explain to Mr. Shamrock that youtube is a free internet video service, right? I mean, if I had the option to pay $45 or not see that sad display of events... take a guess. Not sure how internet hits correlate to PPV buys. I watched Joaquin Phoenix rap on there earlier, I assure you it does not mean I would purchase a concert ticket.
NinJay- February 20, 2009 at 3:21 pm
KG....the answer to your question is 16,888,196 views for Rick Roll on YouTube.

Damn that's gott be worth alot of ppv buys.
KG- February 20, 2009 at 3:03 pm
How many Youtube views has the "Rick Roll" video gotten? Rick Astley should fight Ken Shamrock next.. that would be a SUPERFIGHT (minus the vaseline). Dana and Joe Silva, are you listening?

I guess I shouldnt be assuming anything. For all we know, 300,000 people 'Ken-Rolled' other people with links to Shamrock vs. Out-of-shape fat guy on Youtube...
ElTerrible- February 20, 2009 at 3:01 pm
You know, Ken doesn't just "almost weirdly succeed" in justifying the spectacle his career has become, he absolutely succeeds. I think Ken made several salient points in that interview and I, for one, wasn't expecting it. There are only a couple things that set Ken apart from the vast majority of fighters who will never, ever be on top. The first is his age, but he makes a good point in that he's in better shape than maybe half of the fighters out there. I mean, if we're going to talk about whether or not somebody's in fighting shape, where the fuck are the cries for Ross Clifton to hang it up? Or do we all think the Stevia is really working that well for him and it's only a matter of time before he's in proper condition? The bottom line is that people remember when Ken was at the top, and it's depressing for them to see that he no longer is. I can understand that, and I get it. But Ken is absolutely right in pointing out the pure selfishness of that kind of perspective.

I don't want to see the guy get hurt, and I'm not compelled by any of these fights, including the one with Tank. But you know what? It's no more harmful or meaningless than about 99 percent of the MMA matches that go on outside the major organizations. So if Ken wants to do it, and if some yahoos are willing to pony up the dough to watch it, none of us has the right to say it shouldn't be so. If we don't want to watch it, all we have to do is follow Shamrock's advice and not watch. I won't watch, but I certainly won't try to tell Ken his business.

And yeah, despite not being a "mastermind", the dude has it all OVER Tito in the brains department.
Ozone- February 20, 2009 at 1:56 pm
I'd love to see Shammy v Tank for many reasons, the least having to do with high caliber mma...that said i'd def be "pushing in the numbers on the computer" for free rather than paying for it...let him fight till he's in the ground for christ's sake if he wants wtf else is he going to do for a living?
Kens Arm- February 20, 2009 at 12:50 pm
Am I the only one wondering why Ken keeps anal beads hidden under the skin of his forearms? I guess he always needs some close by.
mma-pro- February 20, 2009 at 12:31 pm
hey ill watch just about any mma for free, but i would never pay to see shamrock or tank fight. shit, i wouldnt pay to see tank fight ten years ago
Dex- February 20, 2009 at 12:16 pm
Hits on Youtube and pushing that button to pay REAL CASH for some crappy fight are 2 totally different things.

I'd imagine Tank/Ken could do 20k buys if it was like 9.99 or something MAYBE. I'm trying to be nice.

RickDickulous- February 20, 2009 at 12:13 pm
Ken's gotta supplement his medicare somehow, who are we to stop him? The blood pressure and dementia meds are expensive and medicare only covers 80%.
My Fight Wiffa Cheeto- February 20, 2009 at 12:08 pm
I thoroughly enjoy the fact that there is some kind of action being taken against this "COOL!" thing.

Things we should think about when regarding a fighters legacy. Muhammed "His Momma called him 'Clay' I'm gon' call him 'Clay'" Ali was fighting in the 80's. The fucking 80's. His first pro fight was in 1960. Now in NO WAY SHAPE OR FORM should Ali and Shamrock be paralleled in regards to respect/greatest ever, etc; but Ali felt the same way Shamrock does. If people want to see him fight, he'll fight and the G.O.A.T. did.

Who are we to decide NOW what Shamrock's legacy is? Further down the line some of us will look at his pathetic attempts at an audience by fighting Ross Clifton as tarnish, while others will say, "who the fuck is Ross Clifton?"

Shammy did a lot for the sport and he's a... decent ambassador for it. Like someone said at least he's not a fumbling stumbling mess like ol' giant head Cheeto Ortiz-Jameson
He Also Said- February 20, 2009 at 12:03 pm
"I will get my respect or I will die" Ken Shamrock
Anti Cool Guy- February 20, 2009 at 11:59 am
Stop complaining about the COOL guy or the sensitive "give it up" guy is gonna write another long post about how it bothers him that people are bothered about COOL guy, because for some strange reason, he doesn't mind COOL guy.
rokabee- February 20, 2009 at 11:54 am
“I will beat you into a living death” – Ken Shamrock
Kaibo- February 20, 2009 at 11:44 am
Because a circus and a PPV MMA event are popular for the same reason.
Kadumel- February 20, 2009 at 11:32 am
Hey Ben, can we just give COOL a shirt to stop?
ADW- February 20, 2009 at 11:28 am
This cool guy is a fucking tool. Somebody please send WarMachine over to his house to buttrape him.

Fuck a coolguy
Unemployed Ninja- February 20, 2009 at 11:24 am
This COOL! guy needs to be stopped.
Thoughts- February 20, 2009 at 11:12 am
Hey, there has to be some place for us to watch fading stars fizzle and die.

You tube - Get-t-up!

PPV - not so much.
Jay Smith- February 20, 2009 at 11:10 am
I'd watch him fight, but I wouldn't pay for it.
jdavis- February 20, 2009 at 11:09 am
If Ken's wanting to score big Youtube numbers then he should book fights with Tron Guy and Tay Zonday.

Wagods 2: Ken Shamrock vs Drama Prairie Dog featuring Tank Abbott punching LonelyGirl15 in the back of the head. Get your tickets now.
War Machine- February 20, 2009 at 10:56 am
Fuck a Worlds Most Dangerous Man!
Dave W- February 20, 2009 at 10:49 am
@ Jay

lol. nice