â†µâ‡¥Slice has called White's bluff and will appear on Season 10 of the highly rated Spike TV series, (Dana) White has confirmed...His appearance, along with that of former UFC light heavyweight champions Quinton "Rampage" Jackson and Rashad Evans as coaches, should guarantee massive ratings."It should be interesting, given some of the things I've said about him," White said. â†µâ†µ
â†µThat prior public drama and the massive ratings for Kimbo's EliteXC fights are behind the invitation, a piece of superb showmanship by the UFC president. Purists will bemoan Slice getting a slot on The Ultimate Fighter -- a show first, but also the coming out part for legitimate talent like Forrest Griffin and Rashad Evans -- because it takes a space away from a younger, perhaps more traditional MMA fighter. This is true: someone who might otherwise benefit from the show's exposure will miss that chance thanks to someone largely famous for beating up flabby Miami bouncers in backyard bareknuckle matches uploaded to YouTube. â†µâ†µ
â†µDon't sleep on this upside, though: based on all the evidence thus far, any extremely skilled MMA fighter who could qualify for The Ultimate Fighter who gets Slice in a fight now essentially has a bye week built into the schedule, and the chance to permanently pop the Kimbo bubble by defeating him. (Born 2003; currently on life support and breathing shallowly with faint pulse.) â†µâ†µ
â†µEven if Slice does well in the competition, White wins either way. â†µSlice wins, and he gets the ratings; Slice loses, and he was not only right in his public denigration of Slice's skills, but he also boosts the strength of the UFC brand in the process by showing the skills of their aspiring fighters. If Kimbo fades out in the grip of a nasty triangle choke against the relative babies featured in The Ultimate Fighter, imagine what would happen if he stepped in the ring against someone like Rampage Jackson or Anderson Silva? â†µâ†µ
This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.