Aw, isn’t it cute how fast these scandals grow? First they’re cute little babies and next thing you know they’re off to school and then they’re smoking pot behind the shed with their hoodlum friends. It’s a bittersweet feeling, but you have to let these things go and spread their wings.
So updates, updates. Dana White has surfaced in the Boston Herald calling Kimbo “a guy who fights at people’s barbecues” and he trashes the situation like you’d expect him to. EliteXC’s head Jeremy Lappen tries to kill two press release birds with one stone by declaring his promotion’s innocence while also pimping their event’s success with the 18-34 male demographic.
Oh, and there’s a pretty interesting quote in the LA Times from Gary Shaw, who was one of the key guys who built up the company:
But Elite XC consultant Gary Shaw said he wouldn’t hesitate to “go to a fighter and say, ‘We’re looking for a stand-up fight.’ You’re not asking him to throw a fight. You’re talking about a fan-friendly fight, not about protecting Kimbo.”
Shaw said he has urged MMA fighters in the past to maximize the action, to avoid an abundance of yawn-inspiring wrestling.
“Do I think that’s unethical? No,” Shaw said. “Because in MMA, you get bonus money for a knockout. I don’t see it as unethical . . . asking him to be TV and fan friendly.”
Obviously, this is the quote that everyone is focusing on. It not only backs up the idea that EliteXC did this with Petruzelli and Shamrock, but that they did it on a regular basis and have never seen anything wrong with it. Whether that makes it better or worse really depends on your opinion of the overall situation.
Whatever the case, you better believe this story ain’t gonna die out any time soon. Zach Arnold points out that there are a lot of very pissed off people in Vegas … ya know, where they gamble on these fights under the idea that they are legitimate sporting contests? EliteXC’s next event is being held in Nevada and while Florida’s athletic commission may not be looking into things, you better believe the NSAC is already poking things with a stick.
Again, the good thing about this situation and the media scrutiny is if there really is some impropriety going down, we WILL find out about it. If the promotion has a history of cooking the fights, that history isn’t going to magically dissapear. EliteXC simply isn’t good enough to hide it, and it’s fighters don’t love the promotion enough to risk their licenses if they receive a phone call from Keith Kizer asking very specific questions.