|Association||American Top Team|
|Weight Class||Heavyweight (225 lbs.)|
|Height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Style||Street Fighting, Boxing|
|Birth Date||February 8, 1974|
|Fighting Out Of||Miami, Florida|
|Kimbo Slice Pictures||Official Website|
Kevin Ferguson, better known as Kimbo Slice, is a Bahamian American mixed martial artist who competes as a Heavyweight. He is best known for several street fights which have spread primarily on the Internet. Slice left the underground fighting scene and signed a professional contract with EliteXC in 2007. After EliteXC declared bankruptcy in 2008, Slice became a free agent. Rolling Stone called Slice "The King of the Web Brawlers."
Slice was a part of the tenth installment of The Ultimate Fighter, The Ultimate Fighter 10: Heavyweights.
|Record||4 - 2 - 0 (Win – Loss – Draw)|
|Loss||Matt Mitrione||TKO (Punches)||UFC 113: Machida vs. Shogun 2||5/08/2010||2||4:24||Post-fight released from UFC|
|Win||Houston Alexander||Decision (Unanimous)||The Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale||12/05/2009||3||5:00||Catchweight bout (215 lbs.)|
|Loss||Seth Petruzelli||TKO (Punches)||EliteXC: Heat||10/04/2008||1||0:14||Fight was to be against Ken Shamrock, who was pulled out due to a cut above his eye; Petruzelli took the fight one hour before the event began, officially weighing in at 205.5 lb (93.2 kg).|
|Win||James Thompson||TKO (Punches)||EliteXC: Primetime||5/31/2008||3||0:38|
|Win||David Abbott||KO (Punches)||EliteXC: Street Certified||2/16/2008||1||0:43|
|Win||Bo Cantrell||Submission (Punches)||EliteXC: Renegade||11/10/2007||1||0:19||Professional MMA debut|
Mixed Martial Arts Pro-exhibition Match Record
|Win||Ray Mercer||Submission (Guillotine Choke)||Cage Fury Fighting Championship 5||6/23/2007||1||1:12|
Ferguson was born in Nassau, Bahamas. Ferguson soon moved to the United States and grew up in Cutler Ridge, Florida, raised alongside his two brothers by a single mother named Rosemary Clarke. He went to Bel-Air Elementary School and when Ferguson was 13 years old, he was involved in his first fight, trying to defend a friend. He continued his studies with Cutler Ridge Middle School and later with Richmond Heights Middle School. He attended Miami Palmetto High School, where he was the star middle linebacker. In 1992, his house in Perrine, Florida was destroyed by Hurricane Andrew and he continued living in his 1987 Nissan Pathfinder for a month.
For college, he attended both Bethune-Cookman University and the University of Miami, where he had an athletic scholarship and studied criminal justice. He was there for only a year and a half. In 1997, he had a tryout with the Miami Dolphins and was part of the pre-season squad, but was unable to get a place in the first team.
Rise to Stardom
Ferguson started working as bouncer for a strip club until highschool friend and current manager, Mike "IceyMike" Ember, offered him a job as limousine driver and bodyguard for RK Netmedia, better known as RealityKings, a Miami-based pornography production/promotion company responsible for a number of popular adult subscription websites. Kimbo still maintains close ties with RealityKings who now accompanies him, as his fight entourage, under the name Team Kimbo.
In 2002, he was charged for carrying a concealed weapon and in 2003, he began his career in unsanctioned street fights. They were distributed through the Internet, mainly through the adult website SublimeDirectory.net and YouTube. In his first taped fight against a man named Big D, Ferguson left a large cut on his opponent's right eye which led Internet fans to call him Slice, becoming the last name to his already popular childhood nickname, Kimbo.
His only on-tape street fight loss was against Sean Gannon, a former Boston police officer who also trains in MMA. The popularity of the fight propelled both men into the MMA spotlight.
Mixed Martial Arts Career
To prepare for sanctioned MMA fights, Slice was trained by retired MMA fighter Bas Rutten and boxing instructor Randy Khatami at Rutten's school, EliteMMA, in Thousand Oaks, California. Slice made his amateur MMA debut against former WBO Heavyweight champion and Olympic gold-medalist boxer Ray Mercer at Cage Fury Fighting Championships 5, in Atlantic City on June 23, 2007. The match was scheduled as a three-round exhibition utilizing all professional rules of MMA combat. Slice defeated Mercer with a guillotine choke at 1:12 into the first round. In a post-fight interview, Slice stated that he would like to fight David "Tank" Abbott. Abbott, who was a spectator, stood up from his seat and accepted the call out. One of the matchmakers for CFFC asked Slice for his assurance so that an October 12 bout at Cage Fury Fighting Championships 6 between Slice and "Tank" Abbott could be organized. This event was later canceled due to a promotion dispute. On October 11, 2007, ProElite announced that they had signed Slice to a deal and that he would make his debut on the November 10, 2007 EliteXC. He was originally set to make his professional MMA debut against Mike Bourke, a reformed street fighter, but a shoulder injury from Bourke led him to face Bo Cantrell. Kimbo defeated Cantrell 19 seconds into the first round by submission due to strikes.
On February 16, 2008, Kimbo fought Tank Abbott in the main event at EliteXC: Street Certified. He won by KO 43 seconds into the first round due to strikes. At the fight his weight was announced at an all-time low of 234 lb (106 kg), a far cry from his street fighting days of 280 lb (130 kg).
On May 31, 2008, Kimbo fought in the main event of the first ever mixed martial arts event shown on prime time network television, EliteXC: Primetime. Though one of the judges had each fighter winning one of the first two rounds, Kimbo's opponent James Thompson won both on total points by repeatedly taking down Slice and grounding and pounding. In the opening seconds of the third round, however, Kimbo threw a haymaker to Thompson's left ear, which ruptured Thompson's cauliflower. This was soon followed by three unanswered punches to a standing Thompson, which led to a referee stoppage and the controversial win for Slice. Fellow EliteXC competitor Brett Rogers was particularly critical of Slice's victory, calling Slice's performance "garbage" in a post fight interview. Frank Mir was also critical of Slice, stating in an interview that "every time Kimbo Slice fights, it sets (mixed martial arts) back."
Fight with Petruzelli
On October 4, 2008, a Kimbo Slice vs. Ken Shamrock fight was supposed to take place at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida as part of CBS' Saturday Night Fights. However, Shamrock received a cut to the left eye during a warm-up only hours before the fight was to take place. This left the head of fight operations, Jeremy Lappen, to choose a replacement for the fight. Options were Seth Petruzelli, Aaron Rosa and Frank Shamrock. Lappen decided that Petruzelli was the best option for the main event. Slice agreed to take the fight after receiving a raise in pay, and took in $500,000. Petruzelli defeated Slice by TKO 14 seconds into the first round of the bout.
Interviewed on the popular radio show The Monsters In The Morning two days after the fight, Seth Petruzelli said that when they offered him a spot in the main event, EliteXC promoters added monetary incentives to dissuade him from using certain fighting techniques against Slice, in an attempt to protect their relatively unproven Internet star.
- “The promoters kinda hinted to me and they gave me the money to stand and throw with him, they didn't want me to take him down. Let's just put it that way. It was worth my while to try and stand up punch him.”
This added to the controversy surrounding the representation of Slice as a top flight martial artist by CBS and EliteXC. The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation started a preliminary investigation on the events surrounding the fight and its outcome.
However, Petruzelli clarified his position hours later, claiming in a follow-up interview with MMA website FiveOuncesofPain.com that his previous comments on The Monsters had been misinterpreted.
- “What was meant to be said was that I wanted to keep the fight standing for myself because I knew that was what the crowd, the promoters, and everyone wanted to see because that’s more exciting than just taking someone to the ground. That was my thing only. I wanted to keep it exciting so I decided to keep it standing. It had nothing to do with anybody else. That was all me.”
On October 23, 2008, The Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation concluded its investigation of the bout and found no wrongdoing. By the end of October 2008, EliteXC was forced to file for bankruptcy. Many in the mixed martial arts community, including Jay Thompson, executive consultant to the company, attributed EliteXC and ProElite's failure due to Slice's loss to Seth Petruzelli.
Post-Demise of ProElite
With the demise of ProElite, which took EliteXC down with it, Ferguson's future was up in the air. When Strikeforce acquired EliteXC's contracts, many expected him to fight for them. In an interview Ferguson stated that he would fulfill his contractual obligations and then move into boxing.
The Ultimate Fighter
Slice would participate in The Ultimate Fighter 10: Heavyweights. The coaches lined up for the show were Quinton Jackson and Rashad Evans, both former UFC Light Heavyweight Champions. In his first fight of the show, Kimbo was defeated by eventual winner Roy Nelson via TKO stoppage in the second round after repeated punches to the head in the crucifix position.
Throughout the show they attempted to hint at Slice possibly returning to action, though nothing materialized.
Ferguson took part of The Ultimate Fighter 10 Finale on December 5, 2009 against feared striker Houston Alexander, who is well known for having a less than impressive ground game. The bout took place at a catchweight of 215 lbs, and early reports stated that Ferguson was having issues getting to the desired weight, though by weigh-in he was fine.
Surprisingly, a fight that seemed destined for a quick finish actually began with an extended stalemate as Alexander continuously circled away from his opponent. In fact, it was nearly two minutes into the fight before Alexander even began working leg kicks to the arthritic knee that slowed Ferguson on "TUF 10." And though the stick-and-move game plan worked for the first round, Ferguson closed the distance and used brute strength to take the final two rounds.
Ferguson, who spent his pre-fight camp with American Top Team, demonstrated a host of new skills to take those rounds: improved clinch work, powerful suplexes, effective ground and pound, and overall patience. But despite the improvement, Ferguson struggled with some of the basics and was largely effective only because of the holes in Alexander's own ground game.
Still, with some stinging shots and Alexander's limited gas tank, Ferguson took the unanimous decision via scores of 29-28, 29-28 and 30-27.
It was learned mid-January 2010 that Ferguson would return to action to face off against former The Ultimate Fighter 10 cast-mate Matt Mitrione. The bout took place at UFC 113: Machida vs. Shogun 2. Throughout the fight Mitrione showed he had improved in all aspects of the game, most importantly his conditioning. Mitrione mounted an impressive offense that had Slice easily exhausted by the second round, which allowed Mitrione to tee off with a prolonged ground-and-pound assault after a second-round takedown. The onslaught prompted a merciful TKO stoppage at the 4:24 mark of the round. Following the loss Dana White announced that Ferguson had been released from the UFC.
Other Media Coverage
A series called "Junk Yard Training" was released on yardbarker.com and youtube.com which featured LaDainian Tomlinson, running-back for the San Diego Chargers, training in Kimbo's backyard.
Ferguson currently lives with his family in Miami, and is a single father to six children; three boys and three girls. The boys names are Kevin Jr., Kevin II, and Kevlar while the girls names are Kassandra, Kiara, and Kevina. He is engaged to long-time girlfriend, Antionette Ray. Ferguson was featured on The Iron Ring, a television series airing on BET which features MMA prospects. Slice was part of the selection process for the participants. He made his official acting debut when playing Bludge on Nickelodeon's holiday special, Merry Christmas, Drake & Josh.