MMA Fighter Challenges People to Punch Him in the Face, Everyone Fails

Tag: UFC 13

On This Day in MMA History: Tito Ortiz Knees Guy Mezger into Submission and Somehow Still Loses at UFC 13

Believe it or not, there was a time long, long ago when Tito Ortiz was something other than a dopey, stuttering mass of injury excuses and self-congratulatory speeches — “The pre-Jenna Era,” as it’s sometimes called. Yes, “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” preferred to let his fists, knees, and elbows do the talking for him back in the late nineties/early aughts, and we respected him so, so much more for it. Of course, he got off to a rough start in his first night as a professional fighter, when he kneed Guy Mezger into submission and *still* lost at UFC 13 on May 30th, 1997 — 17 years ago today.

To be fair, Ortiz’s actual MMA/UFC debut came just hours earlier, and ended in a 31-second TKO of Wes Albritton. But it was his main event showdown with Mezger, a Pancrase veteran and member of the Lion’s Den camp, that would go down as the first of many controversial moments in the future Hall of Famer’s career.

After besting Mezger on the feet in the early-going and brushing off his takedown attempts, Ortiz unleashed a vicious barrage of knees to Mezger’s noggin’, eliciting what many believed (ringside announcers Bruce Beck and Jeff Blatnick included) to be a tap from Mezger. Big John McCarthy would eventually intervene to check the cuts on Mezger’s head, where he would clarify his belief that Mezger was not tapping, but rather attempting to block Ortiz’s knees (a fact that remains disputed to this day). In any case, Big John would restart things on the feet and Mezger would secure a fight-ending guillotine shortly thereafter, sparking a decade-long rivalry between Ortiz and the Shamrock brothers.

After the jump: A collection of full fight videos from UFC 13, including the UFC/MMA debut of fellow HOFer Randy Couture, Vitor Belfort vs. Tank Abbott, and Enson Inoue vs. Royce Alger.

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Classic Fight: The Old Vitor Belfort Destroys Tank Abbott at UFC 13


(Phenom vs. Tank, 5/30/97. Props: UFCVitorVBelfort)

In their continuing efforts to convince you that Vitor Belfort has at least a puncher’s chance against Jon Jones at UFC 152, the UFC has just made the Vitor Belfort vs. Tank Abbott fight from UFC 13 available on YouTube. Just 20 years old at the time, Belfort had made his Octagon debut three months prior at UFC 12, winning the four-man heavyweight bracket in a combined fight time of two minutes. Belfort’s subsequent “superfight” against Abbott — still a somewhat legitimate competitor back then — turned out to be another blitzkrieg. In just 52 seconds, it was all over.

But even more so than the overwhelming striking performance from the Phenom, I think my favorite part of this video is 3:30-3:41, where Belfort calls out for his beloved trainer “Stankie,” and we get a glimpse at a younger (but still pretty old) Al Stankiewicz. Then, we see that Stankie’s hands are wrapped as if he was going to fight that night. Classic.

In a related story, betting odds for Jones vs. Belfort have calmed down somewhat, and the champ is being offered as low as -740. You can also turn $100 into $12,000 if you bet that the fight will be a draw, and the fight actually turns out to be a draw. I’m just saying. What were going to do with that $100 anyway, you know?

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Awesome Story of the Day: Guy Mezger Saved a Woman From Knife-Wielding Scumbag Last Month

By Mike Russell


(In your face, Jon Jones)

In spite of the fact that Guy Mezger retired seven years ago this month from active MMA competition, the 44-year-old former Lion’s Den fighter proved recently that he is still a badass.

Mezger, who is the president of HDNet, stepped in to offer assistance to a woman who was being roughed up by her boyfriend outside a Dallas sports store the week before Christmas and soon found himself in a fight with the angry beau.

According to the UFC 13 tournament winner, most of the onlookers just stood and gawked as the angry man repeatedly pushed the terrified woman to the ground while hurling obscenities at her, so he decided to try to diffuse the situation by stepping in between the pair and talking it out with the attacker. The next thing he knew, the guy was rushing him.

Big mistake.

“He wasn’t a big guy. He was maybe 150, 160 pounds. I’m presently about 200, 210 give or take, so I figured my physical size would be somewhat intimidating to him, which it wasn’t. I said, ‘Listen, the cops are called,’ and he said, ‘You called the cops?’ I was like, ‘Yeah,’ and he starts coming at me. It’s funny because he didn’t know how to fight,” he explained to radio host Bob Carson on Carson’s Corner last night. “It was hilarious, actually. I just kind of grabbed him and held onto him with an overhook on the right side and he was trying to hit me with his left. I’m like, ‘Hey buddy, settle down…calm down,’ and all this stuff. He tried to bite at me and then he tried to grab my nuts with his left hand. Then I just had enough, so I did a head-and-arm-throw. [It's] one of my better throws. We hit the concrete and it knocked him out.”

After the brief “fight,” Mezger went to check on the woman to make sure she knew she was safe now and to see if she was hurt. In the meantime, the guy he just KO’ed came to and was even more incensed than he was before.

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Rematch Report: Garcia vs. Phan II Booked for UFN 24 and Maynard vs. Edgar III Penciled in for UFC 130


(The losers get a bonus check from the judges’ bookie.)

The UFC will attempt to get some resolution between some of its disgruntled employees in the coming months by setting up two rematches between a quartet of fighters involved in controversial decisions in their last bouts.

According to MMAWeekly, Nam Phan will look to avenge his BS loss to Leonard Garcia at the TUF 12 finale when he locks horns with the Team Jackson fighter at UFC Fight Night 24 in Seattle on March 26 and lightweight kingpin Frankie Edgar will attempt to successfully defend his title against Gray Maynard for the first time after their New Year’s Day UFC 125 title fight ended in a somewhat controversial majority draw when the pair get a do-over  at UFC 130 in Las Vegas.

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