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Kimbo Slice vs. Roy Nelson TUF Preview and Prediction

Kimbo Slice makes his UFC debut tonight against Roy Nelson. A fight that is tailor made for a CBS Elite XC special will air on Spike TV as part of The Ultimate Fighter. Slice has turned into a heavy favorite among MMA fans who watch the show. Unfortunately he is fighting a mismatch so bad, that I would be surprised to see it go the distance.

[adinserter block=”1″]Win or lose, Kimbo Slice has already paid huge dividends for UFC. Other than Chuck Liddell or Tito Ortiz competing on The Ultimate Fighter, there will never be another TUF fighter that draws a rating like Kimbo. Ratings have been through the roof this season, mostly due to the presence of Kimbo. It should be no surprise that Dana White has already gone on record and said regardless of the TUF outcome, Kimbo will get a UFC contract.

The Slice-Nelson fight was taped several weeks ago. There have been conflicting spoilers that indicate that Kimbo both wins and loses, so it really anyone’s guess. The preview shows Kimbo coming close to connecting on a big right hand. In the reality TV world, that probably means he doesn’t connect and this one is going to the ground.

Nelson may look like a fat truck driver, but he is no joke. Unlike many heavyweights, Nelson’s strength is his ground game. Nelson is a former IFL champion. Nelson has competed in Abu Dhabi and has a ton of experience on the ground. This is probably the last guy you want to fight if you are Kimbo Slice. Unfortunately for Kimbo fans, Slice is a goner if this thing goes to the ground.

We all know about Kimbo’s punching power. Kimbo became an MMA star after his You Tube videos of street fighting became a viral sensation. Slice gained a quick reputation as a knockout artist after several quick MMA wins. CBS/Viacom even bought into an MMA company and televised their fights all built around the promotion of Kimbo Slice. Unfortunately, building an MMA company around a guy who can’t fight will eventually catch up with you and it did. Kimbo got knocked out in his last fight and controversy regarding whether the fight was slightly manipulated in Kimbo’s favor ended the Elite/Viacom relationship.

If you want to make a case for Kimbo, look no further than Nelson’s fight with Andrei Arlovsky. The former UFC champion knocked out Nelson in the second round. I won’t say Nelson has a glass chin, but the fight did show he was susceptible to a good strike. This of course plays right into the hands of Kimbo Slice. This fight really comes down to whether Slice gets a great opening punch or not on Nelson. Slice will get his opportunity. If Slice doesn’t take advantage of this early, Nelson will ground him and grind out a win or even tap him out.

This fight is going to be huge on a lot of levels. The Ultimate Fighter has already set ratings record. The show was practically given up for dead before this season. 13 million people combined to watch Slice’s last two fights at midnight on a Saturday night. It is conceivable that they could draw the same amount of viewers between the first airing and replays by the end of the week. I can personally tell you that the fight has a huge buzz already among my friends and colleagues.

[adinserter block=”2″]The interesting part of this equation will be what happens if Slice loses. Will the ratings drastically drop? Will UFC jump on the first opportunity to get him back in competition due to an injury? UFC was faced with a similar scenario in the first season when Chris Leben lost his fight. Leben was the star of the show and UFC quickly found a way to get him back in the game after someone went down with an injury. My prediction on the fight is that Nelson wins a boring two-round decision, similar to Slice’s James Thompson fight (which Slice shockingly won). I just don’t think Slice is ready for someone with Nelson’s ground game.

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