UFC

The 10 Most Nefarious Fighters in MMA History

Scott HarrisFeatured ColumnistJune 12, 2014

The 10 Most Nefarious Fighters in MMA History

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    Brock Lesnar
    Brock LesnarSam Greenwood/Getty Images

    At the intersection of Creepy Roommate Street and Pure Evil Drive, you have nefarious.

    It's not a scenic intersection. It's not the kind of place where you want to pull the Town and Country over to the shoulder and just get out and stretch a spell, maybe take the camera out and maybe answer nature's call. Nothing doing, Jack. Nature doesn't exist out this way. At least it's not the nature you know, with your law-abiding ways and "treating people equitably" and whatever.

    These 10 MMA fighters (and a legion of dishonorable mentions both in and out of the cage) are here to show you what nefarious looks like. It doesn't look good, man. It has a very bad hair cut. It's slovenly. It has a penchant for hurtiness clearly apparent in its eyes. Gaze upon its collective rap sheet and feel that slip just a little deeper into madness.

    Fighters evaluated based on dirty tactics in the cage and, well, also out of the cage, possibly in a criminal context. Erm, enjoy!

Dishonorable Mentions (Non-Fighter Division)

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    UFC President Dana White
    UFC President Dana WhiteUSA TODAY Sports

    Just a basic list. The degree of nefarity varies. Individuals listed in no particular order. Want more info on their reasons for being here? Google away.

    Dana White

    Bjorn Rebney

    Vadim Finkelstein

    Naoto Morishita

    Lloyd Irvin

    Todd Beard

    Anyone from EFC South Africa

    Bob Arum

    Edith LaBelle

    Bob Meyrowitz

    Cecil Peoples 

Dishonorable Mentions (Fighter Division)

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    Alistair Overeem
    Alistair OvereemGregory Payan/Associated Press

    Once again, if you don't know, you better Google somebody.

     

    Rob Emerson

    Kimo Leopoldo

    Matt Hughes

    Most of the Gracie family

    Brett Rogers

    Gerard Gordeau

    Thiago Silva

    Melvin Costa

    War Machine

    Alistair Overeem

    Renato "Babalu" Sobral

    Ryan Ford

    Jessica Eye

    Maiquel Falcao

    Chael P. Sonnen

Vitor Belfort

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    Andre Penner/Associated Press

    It's not just that he's a known flouter of the rules, though there is that. (And it's a "that" that has dogged him for years.)

    It's that he does it all so self-righteously. He's not unlike an MMA answer to Lance Armstrong, employing downright Clintonian wordsmithing in his responses, threatening those who dare to challenge him or invoking his faith as an answer to a question other than the one that was asked.

    He's just a shady dude. But don't take my word for it. Take it from fellow fighter Luke Rockhold, who said Belfort led "a shady life." 

Brock Lesnar

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    Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images

    If I was drafting nefarious MMA fighters based on pure upside, I think I'd have to go with Brock Lesnar.

    With all his opponent taunting and gay-disliking and sword-tattoo-having and gun-toting and anger-having-a-hard-time-managing character, you'd have to think he'd be in trouble a lot more often if he didn't live in the middle of freaking nowhere.

    He's often been described as a natural-born warrior, someone who would have ridden at the front of the army back in the old days. You just wonder what army that would have been. Well, actually I don't wonder much. It would have been the bad guys.

Will Chope

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    Suhaimi Abdullah/Getty Images

    Will Chope received his UFC walking papers this March after documents came out (thanks to Bleacher Report, no less) that he was discharged from the Air Force for repeatedly assaulting his wife. 

Brandon Saling

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    Nicknamed White Steel, Brandon Saling certainly can't be accused of any stealth nefarity.

    Nope, it's all right there. Literally, on his skin. He's a Neo-Nazi, all right.

    The Strikeforce and Bellator veteran is also a repeat criminal and sex offender. Luckily, his career in or anywhere near the spotlight appears to be over, as he hasn't fought in a few years.

Ricco Rodriguez

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    Al Bello/Getty Images

    At 53-21 (1), Rodriguez has certainly had a good MMA career for a long time. But for just as long a time, he's had a bad reputation.

    There was the DUI arrest, yes. And there was also the stint on Celebrity Rehab

    But another little line item on the resume, this one from 2011, might better encapsulate the kind of personality we're talking about. After taking a $70 cab ride, Rodriguez refused to pay the cab driver more than $20. An argument ensued. The police came. Rodriguez fought them. It took three officers to subdue him.

    That's the kind of guy we're talking about.

Gilbert Yvel

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    Whenever you have a "DQ (biting)" and a "DQ (KO'd referee)" on your record, you know that you're either a professional wrestler, or you have lost your mind.

    But so goes Gilbert Yvel, a fighter fearsome enough you'd think he wouldn't need to resort to such things. And he didn't. He was just crazy.

    Yvel also has a disqualification for eye-gouging. So it's like the dirty-fighter trifecta there. But this ref KO. Can you believe he was allowed back into any sort of cage after that? He actually fought in the UFC three times after that happened! Someone get Jason High on the phone.

Dan McGuane

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    Dan McGuane and his brother were put on trial for manslaughter after they beat a much smaller kid to death in a parking lot.

    That didn't stop Bellator from signing him. He luckily never fought for them after the public outcry, but still. This could be the biggest black mark of all of Bellator's dubious signings. And that's saying something.

Joe Son

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    Joe Son is now in jail for the rest of his natural life.

    Random Task was thrown in the slammer in 2011 after being convicted of torture. Not long after, he was accused of murdering his cellmate.

    This is bad stuff.

Viacheslav Datsik

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    The Viacheslav Datsik story must always begin at one place. The dude once knocked out Andrei Arlovski.

    That lends just enough credence to his talents that he was allowed to continue in pro MMA for several years, against all other instincts or logic.

    I mean, the guy's just a psycho. He escaped from a psych ward by tearing a hole in a chain-link fence with his bare hands. He was later caught when he was apprehended after robbing a mobile-phone store.

    And those are just his most recent capers.

Lee Murray

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    Give it up for "Lightning" Lee Murray.

    The story of this arch criminal and pretty darn good MMA fighter (he once gave Anderson Silva a decent scrap) is well-documented.

    He grew up violent, living as a drug dealer before trying MMA and ultimately masterminding a $92 millionthat's not a misprintbank heist in his native Great Britain. He eluded capture for a while before being arrested in Morocco. He's still incarcerated there today, despite his best efforts.

    This is just K-1 level nefarity right here.


    Scott Harris likes to think of himself as nefarious. So follow him on Twitter, why don't you. Or else.

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