Former UFC fighter Keith Jardine was the headliner last weekend at the mildly anticipated Nemesis MMA: Global Invasion event in the Dominican Republic, and it may go down as the worst MMA event in the history of the sport. Jardine won his match against Francisco France via unanimous decision, which is awesome for Jardine because he’d lost his previous five fights. The problem is that everyone accused Jardine of greasing himself like a Scotsman and nobody could decide if he did because there were no judges. And from there the story just gets awesome.
A pair of fighters – Paul Buentello and Eliot Marshall – said that the entire event was screwed from the start, as only a few hundred people showed up to see the fights and that spelled doom for the revenue. Not only did the event have no judges, timekeeper, medical staff (there was a guy with a bag full of Band-Aids and a water bottle) or fans, there was no money to pay the fighters. The event’s promoters told the fighters to meet them in a coffee shop on the morning after the fight to collect their paychecks. You wanna guess what happened?
For some reason, according to Marshall fighters were still expecting to get paid “nearly what the UFC did for fights” the next morning, even after witnessing the insane dry-humping that was the show itself. Stop us if this starts to sound fishy to you: Nemesis promoters told fighters to meet them in a local coffee shop at 8 a.m. the following morning to receive their paychecks … then the promoters didn’t show up. Hmmm, curious. (Juicy details via Cage Potato)
That’s right, the promoters tried to rip off a bunch of guys who beat the piss out of each other for a living. So the fighters went to the hotel and tracked the promoter down, and after what I assume was some patient and pleasant negotiating, the promoter wrote the fighters checks and guaranteed their validity. As someone who used to collect rent money from college students, all I can say is – come on, guys, are you serious?
Clearly the checks bounced and the fighters had to go back again to claim their money from the same promoter, who for some reason hadn’t fled the country yet. Queue the dramatic twist:
Buentello stormed back up to the promoter’s hotel room – crazy Mexican look in full effect, we’re guessing – but instead of ripping the dude a new one, he actually ended up defending the guy from a gang of Puerto Ricans who looked like they were preparing to literally kill him.
“It was like a scene from ‘Scarface,’” Buentello says. “I was ready to grab (the promoter) by the throat and just start dropping elbows, but, these (Puerto Rican) guys were like 4-foot-5, they come pushing me out of the way (saying) ‘We’re going to kill you right now!’ and before you know it, we had to protect the promoter cause these little guys wanted to kill him. Drag him out to the beach and slice him up. The thing is it was only over a couple thousand dollars, but these guys were pissed.”
Finally, our first Puerto Rican knife fight of the year. I had predicted the PGA’s British Open, but I’ll take what I can get. In the end, nobody got paid and I assume the Nemesis promoter wasn’t sliced up on the beach by angry Puerto Ricans. That’s a shame – it’s how I want to go.
(Banner image from UFC 96 via FrancisSpecker.com)
Some extra credit urban legend killing on the next page…