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Was Ken Shamrock Getting the Same ‘Stand Up Bonus’ From EliteXC?


(Photo courtesy of CombatLifestyle. Check out more pics from this set here.)

The Seth Petruzelli bribery story we discussed yesterday has taken a couple of left turns. First, FiveOuncesofPain contacted Petruzelli for a follow-up on his claim that EliteXC had paid him to keep his fight against Kimbo Slice standing, and Petruzelli backtracked, saying his words were being twisted:

“What was meant to be said was that I wanted to keep the fight standing for myself because I knew that was what the crowd, the promoters, and everyone wanted to see because that’s more exciting than just taking someone to the ground. That was my thing only. I wanted to keep it exciting so I decided to keep it standing. It had nothing to do with anybody else. That was all me.”

Keep it mind that this is a direct contradiction to what Petruzelli actually said during the interview, particularly the line “they gave me the money to stand and trade with him.” Yet when 5oz. asked him directly if EliteXC even hinted that he could receive a bonus by keeping the fight standing, Petruzelli flat-out denied it. (“I just wanted to keep it standing because I felt I could beat [Kimbo] at his own game.”)

It doesn’t take a genius to figure out what’s going on here. After Petruzelli’s radio interview started sweeping the ‘nets, many MMA pundits and fans cried “fix,” even calling for charges to be brought against EliteXC. (Bribery to affect the outcome of a sanctioned fight is a felony in this country.) Petruzelli clearly didn’t understand how serious his revelation was at the time, and now he’s trying to save the asses of his employer and himself. For their part, EliteXC also denies that money was offered to Petruzelli in exchange for going easy on the takedowns. As EliteXC Head of Fight Operations Jeremy Lappen told Sherdog yesterday:

“Obviously we didn’t pay [Petruzelli] to stand. Kimbo had trained for months to fight a guy who’s fighting on the ground. We don’t care if people stand or take people down or what. It doesn’t matter to us. All we want is an exciting fight.”

But was Ken Shamrock actually going to be fighting on the ground?

Figure Four Weekly has published a damning report suggesting that Shamrock would be getting the same “bonus” that Petruzelli did:

Seth Petruzelli said that he was paid to stand with Kimbo. Well, he said that and then he claimed he never said it. For what it’s worth, we heard in the days leading up to the fight that Ken Shamrock was being paid to stand with him as well. It’s a pretty shady way of doing business, and while it’s not outright working the fight it is attempting to give one man an advantage — or a perceived advantage, as did didn’t help Kimbo one goddamn bit — over another.

Before Saturday night, the general consensus was that Shamrock’s only hope of beating Kimbo was to get the fight to the ground. For EliteXC to even suggest to Shamrock that he’d be rewarded monetarily for not doing that against their marquee fighter is as close to fight-fixing as we’ve ever seen in MMA. (If the report is true, of course.) Though it would hurt MMA’s credibility in the short-term, a criminal investigation of EliteXC would strengthen the sport in the long-term. With every unscrupulous promoter that is outed and punished, MMA moves further away from being publicly viewed as an unregulated free-for-all, and closer to being accepted as a legitimate sport.

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Big Nasty- October 6, 2008 at 4:33 pm
^^^

Keep in mind, they also need sub-par tallent for Seth now. Think: They're hyping him as "the real life Rocky". If he now has the mediocre career anyone who knows MMA expects him to have, it'll be the final blow to Ronnie Retard's MMA league/tshirt company. They need some insurance fights to say to the public "See, it's not that Kimbo sucks, it's that Seth is a fucking beast!"

I bet they raid YAMMA for fighters to fight Seth.
Hurricane- October 6, 2008 at 4:10 pm
Just a reminder of a previous post I made:

Butterbean publically claims he wanted a fight with Kimbo, but it was denied by EXC.

Now that they desperately need Kimbo to win and are running low on sub-par talent to pit him against, what are the odds?

Think about it: Two overhyped talentless hacks that the public loves going toe to toe to see who could put more money in Shaw's pocket. Just imagine the way they'd talk about that on ESPN on Wednesday (when nothing happens in the sports world worth covering, so they resort to pretending to be qualified to talk about MMA/Boxing):

Some Guy: "Kimbo just suffered a huge upset loss against a fruity ex-Reality tv star. He needs to get back to his winning ways, when he fought guys with no previous fighting experience like AfroPuff. I mean, the guy's name was AFROPUFF!"

Some Girl: "But Butterbean DID have his own Sega game, and has experience fighting in big-time events like Jackass: The Movie and Wrestlemania. It'll be a fight for the ages....did Chad Johnson say anything stupid yet, or should we make fun of the Lions to kill the next 28 minutes?"
Greg- October 6, 2008 at 4:09 pm
I think people are getting a little too excitied about this one. Granted, I haven't listened to the entire interview becasue I am at work and that would be frowned upon, but I did read the quote and it sounds perfectly legit to me. I've heard fighters say 1,000 times, "I'm getting paid to stand and bang" (or something like that). All their hinting is that they're aware everyone -including the promoter- wants to see some punches, not necessarily that the promoter specified before-hand that a bonus WOULd be awarded for a stand-up fight. I'm giving Seth/Elite the benefit of the doubt.
Anonymous- October 6, 2008 at 3:58 pm
About this...

Hurricane Says:

"Agree 100%. How about that shady stand up in round one between Andre and Big Country? I guess Affliction didn’t want to see Andre exposed as a guy with no ground game."

The standup wasn't a big deal, and besides, Arlovski is a Sambo champ, he has a ground game.
V_Dawg- October 6, 2008 at 3:49 pm
I personally think the cut on Ken's face was intentional. I feel this way because he keeps telling the same story and if he didn't think people would believe, so he had to sell it. Everyone knows it would be easy to just numb the area and get one of the "Cut men" to give a good slice and then stitch it up. For god sakes, the guy's face is practically scar tissue anyway.

Anyone else pick-up on the fact the ring doctor said Ken's doctors took care of it. He had only seen the x-rays. Sounds like an inside screw job to me.
Apexified- October 6, 2008 at 3:36 pm
It would actually have been cool if they offered pink hair a bonus to knock Kimbo out, but it doesn't sound like they were offering a "finishing" bonus like the UFC does. If indeed they asked him to do something as specific as keeping it on the feet then they were, in fact, trying to change the outcome of the fight. The UFC offers bonuses for fight finishes so a fighter is more inclined to end it - every fighters style plays into one of those bonuses, there are no styles that go specifically for boring decisions... except Machida's ;)
kracker peach- October 6, 2008 at 3:32 pm
I would like to change my post from "organizations run by wrestling promoters" to "Insane Clown Posse", there, now i feel better.
kracker peach- October 6, 2008 at 3:26 pm
I agree with Niggajitsu on most of what he says except that when you dont like the contract the your organization wants to lock you into, you can then look at offers from other teams....there are no other"teams" in MMA right now, unless you want a serious paycut, and/or work for organizations run by wrestling promoters.
MMA Wannabe- October 6, 2008 at 3:09 pm
@Kevbo

I agree, I think he CAN beat Fedor, but I wouldn't put money on it.

But hearing about these "paid-to-stand-up" bonus garbage makes me think about Matt Hamills fight with Rich Franklin. I mean I know they are friends and all but this scenario just made me put a fat "what if?" on my memory of that bout.
Kevbo- October 6, 2008 at 2:50 pm
Well ARLOVSKI has some ground game or else he would not have 3 SUB WINS and NO SUB LOSSES to his name. He stopped the Kimura and did well on the ground. Fatboy did a little LnP and got stood up. Nuff said so STFU. AA can beat Fedor.
Mikey Gilz- October 6, 2008 at 2:45 pm
To anyone claiming that fighters need to feel pressured to stand and trade to get paid more.........

Matt Hughes
Brock Lesnar
Randy Couture
Tito Ortiz

4 big names, 2 definite hall of famers, and all on the higher end of the pay scale and noteriety of fighting right now. All ground fighters. If you say you don't get just as pumped for thier fights as you do a Chuck Liddell or Anderson Silva fight you're just not being honest.
mayhem420- October 6, 2008 at 2:32 pm
UFC pays a fighter a bonus for KO of the night, fight of the night and so forth.
Asking a fighter to try and go for the kill vs. paying them before hand to do so is very diffrent.
Paying some one Extra money before hand and telling him/her that to be able to keep this money they need to keep it standing is FIXING FIGHTS. It forces one guy to play into another fighters strengths. Paying a guy after he gets a spectacual KO is not fixing a fight. Its an award for trying harder than the next guy.
What Seth said Elite did was pay him more to keep it standing, thats not a win or KO bonus. If true than this would be very bad for the sport in general.
Markdog- October 6, 2008 at 2:26 pm
I wish the UFC owned me.
hob- October 6, 2008 at 2:23 pm
This doesn't seem that much different to me than the UFC paying bonuses for exciting fights. I've definitely read about Machida feeling pressure form the UFC to produce more exciting fights (i.e. to stand and trade more shots, not just to win another snoozer).

I think Seth was saying that Elite XC wasn't paying him to beat their star (though going back to Machida, he was definitely being paid to go in and beat Tito), they were paying him to produce an entertaining fight. Lay and pray and ground and pound don't fill seats and boring fighters know that they're going to get paid less at the end of the day (in almost every organization). So is the entire sport rigged, because all MMA atheletes are pressured to win in the most exciting fashion rather than in the most effective fashion?
willum- October 6, 2008 at 2:19 pm
i dont know why but EliteXC is just so much more exciting to watch than UFC.
TUF Guy- October 6, 2008 at 2:14 pm
I would have personally paid them out of my pocket to make sure they talk Kimbo into slugging it out with me. I know that under that big beard there is no chin, just a big clitoris.
Niggajitsu- October 6, 2008 at 1:56 pm
Oh yea, and i called it saying that ken would be paid extra to keep it on the feet. It's to bad that fight didn't happen becuase we could have seen the elusive double knock-out. Maybe next time.
Truth2Pwr- October 6, 2008 at 1:52 pm
I can only assume that at this point the shit-eating grin on Dana White's face extends from one end of the Vegas strip clear to the other. He probably had a hard time squeezing his head through the door to his office today. All businesses should be so lucky as to have their primary competitive threat managed by sub-morons like the Shaws. Those dill holes couldn't put on a birthday party for a 5-year old let alone a legit MMA card.
Niggajitsu- October 6, 2008 at 1:48 pm
I am completely ok with the ufc holding a monopoly and I agree with b-rad. and beofre the arguement comes out that they would have to many fighters and we wouldn't get to see who we wanted to fight because of the number of other fighters in the organization, remember that there is nothing saying the UFC can't hold more than one event a month. They could also get a TV deal and show some of the newer fighters on TV and once they have proven themsleves they could be put on main cards of PPV. I just don't want to see loser second rate fighters against supposedly top ranked fighters and I don't think that is the UFC's style. I don't want to sound like a complete UFC nuthugger but they have the best promotion out there and that's the bottom line.

People can complain about how they lock in their fighters with contracts but if you think about it, so does every other major sport out there. I think that a UFC monopoly could benefit the sport and if a fighter does not want to sign a contract then they can go and fight over seas.
Hlem- October 6, 2008 at 1:45 pm
Would it really be illegal to give a bonus for a stand up fight?

A lot of promotions give KO bonuses (which is kosher, I believe), and doing so certainly encourages the fighters involved to fight in a certain style.

Would giving a bonus for keeping the fight standing be any different?
weatherman2012- October 6, 2008 at 1:26 pm
Elite XC is bad news for the sport. Some might think that the UFC is trying to run a monopoly but the truth is that it's a business first and a sport second and the boys at Zuffa know their business. For all of Dana Whites fault however, he still holds the sport in a very high regard. Never has that been more evident than now when you can compare the level of quality and sportsmanship in the UFC against the circus that is Elite XC.

When Dana talks shit about these other promoters going under he really sounds like a dick but now we can see how smart he's been as a business man.

I think Elite XC was smart to get the CBS gig but they have not made a lot of good decisions that would build their organization and their stupid moves are hurting our beloved sport. I think we'll have to weather a bit of shit storm to get through this but the momentum that the UFC has created will keep it going.
b-rad- October 6, 2008 at 1:24 pm
I dont have a problem with the UFC having a monopoly on mma. Thats the problem with boxing right now. So many belts and you never know who the real best boxer is. NFL has a monopoly on football. NBA on basketball, MLB on baseball etc etc. and that is better because the best players get to play in those leagues. UFC does things the right way as far as I can tell. They dont give their big names pushovers for fights. They give the fans fights they want to see. I mean honestly, who isnt stoked about the november and december ppvs. I guess the only problem I do see with UFC having a monopoly is that guys that cant make it in the UFC wouldnt have anywhere to go except over seas.
JTho- October 6, 2008 at 1:14 pm
Hurricane,

Ha. I had forgotten about that. Actually, I probably blocked it out to reduce dissonance. It was as bad as the stand up between Kimbo and Thompson.

God forbid the fat guy wins. He doesn't have a six-pack. No one wants to buy a fat guy's T-shirts.
Muay-Thai- October 6, 2008 at 1:11 pm
to the Hurricane above me: Who owns WEC? Think about,think about,think about it...AHAAAA! Zuffa! and what else does Zuffa own? That´s right,smart one: the UFC !
Hurricane- October 6, 2008 at 12:55 pm
Hey JTho:

Agree 100%. How about that shady stand up in round one between Andre and Big Country? I guess Affliction didn't want to see Andre exposed as a guy with no ground game.

And EXC fans are fucking morons. They all boo'd the entire time that fight was on the ground. Because apparently real fights are two big jackasses aimlessly swinging until one gets a concussion.
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