UFC commentator Joe Rogan is a man not shy of his words, from saying Ronda Rousey needs a comprehensive overhaul of her game to saying Jose Aldo looked “soft” against McGregor with his mic left open. So it wasn’t a wonder why Rogan would let Balloter 149’s Kimbo Slice versus Dada 5000 pass by without saying his piece.
Kimbo versus Dada doesn’t sound like any interesting match-up. If you didn’t know who they were and just listened to their names, you’d think these were two cartoon characters going at it. But if you knew their backgrounds, you would have thought it was going to be the street fight to end all street fights. And why not? These are two legends of the famous underground game in Miami. When Bellator booked this fight several months ago, it was intriguing because Kimbo is 42 and Dada 38. But in their street fights, it wasn’t age or conditioning that matter. It was who was the last man standing.
Up until fight night, the hate between these two men was genuine. We knew they would beat the hell out of each other. They wanted to and both said it beforehand. Anything less than a knockout was unacceptable. To be fair, the fight delivered a knockout but not the one the world expected.
Limbo took the early upper hand when he nailed Dada to the ground. But even in top position, he was never able to do any damage except put his weight on Dada. A couple of shots now and then were landed when Big John stood them up but when the horn to end round one sounded, we knew it was headed for a disaster.
Not only did both look gassed, they look hell spent with still two rounds to go. It was disgusting from there. The heavy fists which ruled the streets appeared to hit like pillow punches. They both moved like drunks coming out of a bar more than two fighters putting up a show. In the third, Kimbo finally knocked out Dada, but it wasn’t because of his punches but because of Dada’s exhaustion:
— Bellator MMA (@BellatorMMA) February 20, 2016
Dada passed out and was taken out on a stretcher. We later learned from a statement from the Harris family (Dada’s) through Bellator MMA that the fighter suffered “severe dehydration, fatigue and renal failure as a result of high levels of potassium in his blood”.
Yes, the danger was real for Dada and we’re glad that he’s recovering but that didn’t take away how awful the fight was.
Going back to Rogan, here’s what his epic reaction to the fight was:
This might be the worst fight I've ever seen
— Joe Rogan (@joerogan) February 20, 2016
Joe may be correct there though, based on the reactions all over the internet. But strange as it sounds, it should have done well in the ratings department for Bellator (even Rogan cared to watch it). And in the end that’s what counts for them really, and not toppling the UFC in terms of talent and quality.
Let’s hope they never do this again. Leave the sport to Mixed Martial Artists and let the street fighters fight on the streets. It’s for their own health and safety. It’s a good thing nothing serious happened to either man, else Coker would have been cooked today.