Muhammed Lawal, more prominently referred to as “King Mo” has grabbed a lion’s share of the headlines over the past few weeks since his abrupt departure from Zuffa, LLC, the parent organization to both the Ultimate Fighting Championship and Strikeforce.
At the beginning the year the former Strikeforce light-heavyweight kingpin notched another victory against Strikeforce challenger product Lorenz Larkin in dominating and brutal fashion, playing Larkin’s head like a bongo before highly criticized referee Kim Winslow mercifully stopped the beating.
While most suspected that he would be next in line to challenge for the vacant title he once owned, instead news broke that he had Drostanolone, an anabolic steroid.
“Here’s the thing right, the drug test y’know they changed the stuff that I purchased, I had surgery, I had a staph infection for surgery and then because of my leg they had me in hospital for a total of about a month on and off”
He continued “I had a total of sixteen procedures to remove the staph from my knee then I had to take antibiotics through an IV so it was rough man, the time was rough and I got released by Zuffa but I stayed strong”
Lawal went before the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) and as most expected to happen the American Kickboxing Academy standout was fined $39,000 and slapped with a nine month suspension from competition.
But the real action began after he left the room, within minutes he was typing away on his smart phone sending a tweet out to his 16,571 followers calling NSAC commissioner Pat Ludvall a “racist bitch”.
Issues arose during the conference when Ludvall asked Lawal if he “speaks or writes English” despite being seven minutes into the meeting where the college graduate had been speaking.
This momentary lapse in judgment found the 31-year-old on the unemployment line but when one door closes another will open, or in this case two.
This week the news broke that Mo would be partnering with both Bellator Fighting Championships adding to their shallow 205-pound mix as well as him joining number-two ranked professional wrestling organization Impact Wrestling (TNA).
Lawal had been questioned about going into professional wrestling in the past from media and he always remained optimistic about giving it a try somewhere down the line, now he gets to play out a childhood fantasy (with or without the spandex).
“Yeah, it was a childhood dream of mine and I had a chance to pursue it in 2004 with WWE offering me a contract but I turned it down to keep on wrestling and pursuing MMA” he told MMASucka.com
Growing up in NWA territory it’s clear that the charismatic superstar has been influenced by some of the best the sport had ever seen.
“My favorites are Sting, The Great Muta, Nikita Koloff, Arn Anderson, Booker T, One Man Gang, Barry Wyndham, Ricky Steamboat and Randy Savage”
At this stage he will not be slated to enter the Chicago-based Bellator’s circular cage until 2013 when they make the transition to Spike TV but we could see him in Orlando before then, depending on how his training goes in Ohio Valley Wrestling.
“I have to go to wrestling school, it’s not easy, if it were easy I’d just jump in the ring and start doing that thing but you gotta pay your dues man, in every sport you have to pay your dues. You still gotta work at it, I started wrestling [amateur] at fifteen but I have always been working at it”
Whether or not he can simultaneously pull off scripted and real beat downs is a real question mark but he has a big cross-section of the wrestling and MMA audience interested to find out.