Not long after the world lost Muhammad Ali, one of the greatest boxers to ever step foot into the ring, it lost one of the greatest MMA fighters to ever step into an octagon – Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson.
Kimbo’s fighting career arguable began in 2003, when he began participating in unsanctioned mutual combat street fights that were distributed online via sites like SublimeDirectory and YouTube. In his first taped fight, he left a large cut on his opponent’s right eye, which led to fans calling him “Slice”. This combined with his childhood nickname “Kimbo” is what ultimately led to his fighter nickname “Kimbo Slice”.
He gained popularity from taped street fights, receiving the title of “King of the Web Brawlers” by Rolling Stone, and ended up signing a professional contract with EliteXC in 2007. He fought for EliteXC until it closed its doors after declaring bankruptcy in 2008. Dana White, the president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, stated that Kimbo would have to earn his contract in the UFC by competing on The Ultimate Fighter – UFC’s reality TV competition.
Kimbo took Dana White up on the offer and participated in The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights, and was the number one pick for coach Quinton “Rampage” Jackson. He ended up winning against Houston Alexander by unanimous decision during The Ultimate Fighter: Heavyweights finale. However, on May 8th, 2010, Kimbo lost in his first official heavyweight debut by TKO, after which Dana White said it was “probably Kimbo’s last fight in the UFC.” He was released by the UFC the next day.
Nobody had heard anything about Kimbo since his last UFC fight until 2015, when it was reported that he’d signed a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA. Unfortunately, he would only ever fight for Bellator MMA once. On June 6th,2016, Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson died of heart failure. He had three sons, three daughters, and was engaged to his long-time girlfriend. His sudden death shocked everyone.
This tattoo gallery is our way of remembering one of the toughest MMA fighters of our time. RIP Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson.
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