I’ve been in the MMA community for a long time. For over 25 years I have interviewed MMA personalities from Dana White on down to local amateurs. I’ve been an announcer in huge arenas like Statefarm Arena in Atlanta on HDNet and I have been in the dirt floors of a local fairground in the rain. The point is I’ve been around and I have heard alot of awesome stories and a whole lot of BS.
Like a lot of BS.
The easiest way that the fake MMA “champs” managed to survive among real fighters was to first and foremost practice and stick to the lie. Live it. Dress the part and learn the lingo. Learn just enough MMA to guest teach a class the basics one time. And they did.
I won’t call anyone out but those that have been around for a while know quite a few of them I could mention.
There was a traditional martial artist showing up at MMA shows claiming to be a multiple world champion complete with belts. Whether it was Kentucky, Ohio, or Indiana I would run in to him. The organizations were not referenced anywhere and no trace of them could be found. Kind of like Frank Dux and his kumite BS. No one knew he was full of crap at least not the people visiting his booth. Even the fighters were fooled or maybe they didn’t care enough to even mess with it. Who knows. The point is that he got away with it and used it for personal gain.
Another example is someone who was touted as the best bare knuckle fighter in history – by his friends. I had to announce him as such because that was my job. People bought that crap so hard it hurt. Just another example of how they got away with it. Have yourself announced as a bad ass and you become a bad ass – as long as you don’t have to back it up.
The best way to get away with it was to be a promoter. One promoter claims to be over 100-0 as an amateur boxer and still growing. He also claims to be 270-0 and still climbing in some random martial art. This was important at the time because people would kiss some backside to get in good with him. This is how they build a lie and keep it. It’s sad.
Anyone can claim anything they want to before MMA was regulated and its hard to discredit even with the internet search function. They are slowly being discovered and exposed and until they are all brought in to the light we hope people will keep digging.