Though YouTube sensation Kimbo Slice’s upcoming fight with Ray Mercer has been described by UFC head Dana White as “disgusting”, the Boston Globe’s Stan Grossfield jumped thru a number of hoops (“getting a working address for Kimbo Slice is almost as hard as getting a weekend furlough for an Al Qaeda prisoner at Guantanamo Bay.”) in order to interview the subterranean streetfighter.
Former UFC champ Bas Rutten is explaining how the fight (three five-minute rounds) will start. There will be the traditional shaking of hands.
“Hell no, I’m not shaking his hand,” says Slice, sporting a full beard and a Manny RamÃrez-like do-rag. He works hard for more than an hour, never stopping to take a drink.
When Slice finishes and removes his mouthpiece, his bottom teeth — all gold — sparkle. He’s friendly and easygoing. A lot of what’s been posted about him is not true, he says.
So why the secrecy? Is he worried about some street punk coming in with a .38 special?
“No, no, no. It’s none of that . . .”
“With a [expletive] like me that comes from the streets, I know wassup. I’m not a top [expletive] that’s gonna be running my mouth. I bought the streets like that cause that’s how a lot of [expletive] eat. Whether you are black or white or Hispanic, I don’t want to put the business out there like that.”
Slice refuses to discuss the money arrangements for his Internet fights or the gambling aspects. “What happens on the streets stays on the streets,” he says.
He also insists the fights aren’t illegal.
“No, it depends,” he says. “It was investigated. Two men willing to give their consent can settle their differences, whether it’s for a purse or bragging rights.”
Indeed, and if Mr. Slice can successfully segue from backyard brawling to the more rarified PPV universe, I am very hopeful that a certain diminutive combat enthusiast from St. Louis might consider tackling a new pursuit as well. Who amongst us wouldn’t pay to see Kimbo Vs. The World’s Scrappiest Human?