UFC 113 will feature Kimbo Slice matching up against Matt Mitrione in what promises to be one of the more popular fights of the night.
When Slice enters the Octagon on May 8th, he will do so fighting for only the sixth time as a professional fighter. Despite never fighting for a championship title belt, he is still undoubtedly a main attraction for the sport.
Starting from his roots in backyard brawling, Slice knows that he has come a long way to the forefront of the most popular growing sport in the world.
UFC President Dana White once stated that he would never sign Slice to a contract with the UFC because he did not want to open the floodgates for a backyard brawl type fighting style.
However, through several years of fights, including a win over Houston Alexander in December, in which he won by unanimous decision, Slice finds himself on another fight-card.
Still, he remains grateful.
“I never thought I’d get to this level,” Slice said. “I’m not mad at Dana White for making me prove myself. Everyone has to prove themselves in all walks of life. You have to do it honestly, respectfully, with dedication and with commitment. That’s what I’m doing, and here I am.”
Slice embraces his popularity, knowing that his fans are a driving force behind where he is today.
“I hang out in public and the fans talk to me, and I communicate with them,” Slice said. “They feel like they’re a part of my career. I don’t consider myself a celebrity or a stuck-up jerk. Kimbo is at Wal-Mart. Kimbo is at Payless. I eat at the same restaurants everyone else does.”
Through his five professional fights, Slice has tabbed a 4-1 record. He said that he has developed into an intelligent fighter, shining away from a brawling, ground and pound style, and taking up jiu-jitsu, learning from Ricardo Liborio.
“He’s a good guy and does a great job of communicating with his students,” Slice remarked. “I know I started late in this game. I don’t have 15 years under my belt like the majority of these guys, but Liborio still takes time to teach me the [basics].”
Slice looks forward to Mitrione and the opportunity before him.
“I wanna knock that fool out,” Slice stated. “I don’t like Matt. It’s no secret. I’m not gonna play with the dude. I’m coming hard. I’m going for blood.”
Slice is the slight betting favorite on Online Sportsbooks to win, going off at -125. Mitrione is installed at -105.