There aren’t many MMA stars quite like Kevin Ferguson, better known as “Kimbo Slice.” The man is a cult legend and household name to most MMA fans. The former boxer gained initial notoriety with his web video fighting a former Boston police offer in MMA. Kimbo went on a tear in the MMA world, even having a brief stint in the UFC. He stopped fighting in 2010 until he most recently signed with Bellator to fight Ken Shamrock in a record-setting event.
Kimbo knocked Shamrock out after surviving a rear-naked choke attempt. He is now set to headline Bellator’s first trip to Houston, in what would be another high-profile fight. There aren’t that many fighters you can pick to challenge Kimbo right now, but there’s still more than enough to generate quite the buzz.
Remember: no publicity is bad publicity.
Winner of Bobby Lashley vs. James Thompson
The most likely and least crazy scenario, as it was already strongly hinted, is the winner of Bobby Lashley and James Thompson. Kimbo already knocked out James Thompson back in Elite XC, so it might be better if Lashley wins to create new matchup although Thompson has that “just bleed” fighting style that might be better for average fan.
The pairing of Kimbo and Lashley would be both novelty and relevant. Both spectacle and title eliminator. Lashley has won six in a row and is a perfect 3-0 with Bellator, having finished all of his opponents. “The Dominator” is a three-time NAIA Collegiate wrestling champion and former WWE champion. Kimbo has his own fan base dating back to his time as a WWE wrestler.
Forget the title eliminator bout. Give Kimbo a title fight straight away. Why not? Bellator is going to Houston for the first time and looking to make a splash with as big a fight as possible. Kimbo is the draw and a bigger way to draw out Kimbo is to attach him to a title fight. Minakov’s name is all but irrelevant, but he is the title holder.
The Russian’s resume and fighting skill is anything but irrelevant, however. Minakov is unbeaten and has finished all but two of his 16 victories. The Greg Jackson fighter is also multiple-time gold medalist in the Sambo World Championships and also has high-level pedigrees in judo and wrestling. He has been inactive in America since defending his Bellator heavyweight championship against Cheick Kongo last spring.
Quinton “Rampage” Jackson
“Rampage’s” contract dispute with Bellator is a tricky one. Here are the gory details about it. But long story short, there’s a chance he’ll have to either retire or be forced back to his contract with Bellator and fight. “Rampage” loves two things: performing in a spotlight and a brawl against a big name opponent. A fight with Kimbo fulfills all of those.
Since leaving the UFC in 2013 on the heels of a three-fight losing streak, “Rampage” has since won four in a row, including his return fight in the UFC over Fabio Maldonado. “Rampage” has since hinted a possible retirement but a fight with Kimbo as a throwback MMA brawl is really intriguing and totally out of left field, something Bellator enjoys doing.
Angle shouldn’t be wrestling, but he might be fighting. Bellator recently signed the former Olympic gold medalist and multiple time pro wrestling world champion to appear at their Fan Fest before Bellator 145. Angle has previously already hinted at competing in MMA including, fighting Slice in the UFC. Problem is Angle’s 46 and hasn’t competed in pro MMA whatsoever.
The UFC’s signing of CM Punk caused a storm of backlash amongst MMA fighters and fans alike. Bellator pulling this off would cause their own version. But that’s all irrelevant as a Kimbo Slice vs. Kurt Angle headliner will get a lot of attention in both the pro wrestling and MMA world. That’s the type of publicity Coker and Bellator seem to go for, as evidenced by their record-setting matches of Tito Ortiz vs. Stephan Bonnar and Kimbo Slice vs. Ken Shamrock.
As crazy and random as it gets. Singh is a 2-0 MMA fighter with a kickboxing background. He is a behemoth at 6-foot-6 and is about as limited in MMA as Kimbo, making this have a volatile recipe for a beautiful disaster. Singh is all but an unknown, but his name as come up in a potential bout against Fedor, which fizzled out apparently due to being out of shape. There really is no chance this fight happens but crazier things have happened and reality is stranger than fiction.