We struggled a little bit to decide what to call this category. ‘Worst promoter’ didn’t quite do it because we wanted to recognize the fact that you can throw a good event and still be a total dick. So from there we decided that the award would be for ‘Biggest Dickhead Promoter’. This way, you voters can ignore rational thought and brush aside business acumen. Vote with your heart … who do you just fucking hate? The nominees are:
Most people didn’t even know who Todd Beard was until a week before he ended up resigning from Affliction Entertainment in disgrace. This guy’s big coming out party was when he showed up on the Farrell show one night and raging like a maniac about the UFC, Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta, and Randy Couture. This was followed up by Kim Couture filing a restraining order against him for threatening her when she asked about the financials for their joint-owned XTreme Couture clothing label. Last but not least it then came out that Beard was an alcoholic, spent time in jail for defrauding the elderly, and once punched a pregnant woman in the stomach. For real.
Once considered the wise grandpappy of the UFC, Bob Meyrowitz decided to give promoting mixed martial arts another go in 2008 with his ill-fated YAMMA promotion. Not content to follow the status quo, Meyrowitz announced that he was going to change the sport forever with a revolutionary new fighting structure and an oldschool 8 man heavyweight tournament. But then the structure turned out to be a cage with a raised outer lip and the tournament fights were only 5 minutes a piece. This resulted in all the fights going to decision and half the fighters tripping on the lip. Instead of being a revolution, the night was a total embarrassment.
Dana White always warned people about the ‘snakes’ that ruined boxing, but I don’t think anyone actually expected one of them to get his hands on a full fledged promotion. From day one Gary Shaw showed himself to be a man who had no idea what MMA was all about, and even as he started to get the gist of things he decided he was gonna do it his way anyways. Oddball weight classes, freakshow fighters, corrupt matchmaking, you name it, Gary was involved. No one in MMA like him, not even his fellow ProElite members who ended up forcing him out of his job halfway through the year. Oh, and he also hoisted his moron son on us.
Where do we start? Jared Shaw is a no talent ass clown who was handed his job as vice-president of EliteXC by his fat shithead dad Gary. Yep, that pretty much sums him up.
Ya know, Dana seems like he’s a really nice guy … unless you piss him off. Then, the gloves are off and he won’t stop until you’ve been annihilated. Victims of Dana’s anger aren’t hard to find … he’s shat on Fedor, Barnett, Lindland, and more. But what’s a bit of vitriol in an interview compared to the hell he’s put Randy Couture and Tito Ortiz through? Or the freeze-out he subjected Andrei Arlovski and now Roger Huerta with? Still, no one gets the shit end of the stick more than promotions that irk him … Dana worked tirelessly to ensure that the IFL, EliteXC, and Affliction all had less than a snowball’s chance in hell of making it.
Honorable Mentions: Mark Pavelich for the whole Drew Fickett thing and a similar interaction with Gary Goodridge, Bill Santiago from the AFL for signing up a bunch of people and never doing shit, and Jay Larkin for calling ground fighting gay (and the Hex).