The last thing you want to be in this day and age is a bully…unless, of course, you are in the world of MMA. If there is an acceptable place for bullying, it’s in the cage, because there’s nothing wrong with imposing your ill will in a fight. However, in a world where bullying role models are understandably thought of contemptuously, fighters have to draw their bullying inspiration from outside sources—television and film. We stirred up this brew, and found some correlations that hold water. Check out the top five Hollywood bullies and their MMA counterparts.
5. NELSON MUNTZ
Nelson in the quintessential bully, tormenting the nice town of Springfield since 1990, and he’s showing no signs of slowing down. Nelson’s use of the tried and true “stop hitting yourself” technique is unparalleled and his wedgie skills are studied globally. More importantly, Nelson punctuates each beatdown with his trademark heckle—“Haw-Haw!”
Nicknamed “The Bully,” Maynard has been foiling Octagon foes since his 2007 stint on TUF. Even before his days in the cage, the NCAA All-American wrestler was tormenting his challengers on the mat with an in-your-face style that left more than a fair share of his opponents bruised and bloody. Now, that’s something to “Haw-Haw” about.
4. THE O’DOYLE CLAN
Byword: “O’Doyle Rules!”
Like any beleaguered kid, Billy Madison just wanted to get through school. Well, the O’Doyle Clan made sure it wasn’t going to be easy. Whether it was pelting classmates in the face with dodgeballs, cramming lockers full of shit, arguing the merits of Donkey Kong, or stuffing kids in trashcans, an O’Doyle was always owning the hallways.
If a fight is taking place, you can be sure that there are Gracies around, trying to break arms and pinch jugulars. The Brazilian dynasty has spawned champions from the UFC to the ADCC, and everything in between. Royce, Rickson, Renzo, Roger, Rolles…the list goes on and on. If you beat one, another takes his place. It’s a no-win situation to pick a fight with these babushkadolls. Keep on moving.
3. JOHN KREESE
Byword: “Pain does not exist in this dojo, does it?”
Bad-boy Johnny Lawrence gets a lot of credit for his constant beatings of Daniel LaRusso, but the real architect of the bullying was at the top—ex-Special Forces Vietnam Vet, John Kreese. The Cobra Kaisheeded Kreese’s every order, many of which focused on the dismantling of LaRusso. Kreese even faked his own death in an effort to further bully LaRusso in subsequent Karate Kid installments.
Why do I get the feeling that when the cameras are off, Jackson dresses in a black, sleeveless ninja outfit and barks orders about pain, fear, and defeat to his minions. Seconds later, GSP, Rashad Evans, Jon Jones, and Leonard Garcia hop on dirk bikes and proceed to wreak havoc on the mean streets of Albuquerque. Only a diminutive Japanese man can stop them.
2. BIFF TANNEN
Back to the Future
Byword: “What are you looking at, Butthead?”
It doesn’t matter what time zone or timeline you’re in, you don’t want to be on the bad side of Biff (or one of his time-warped ancestors), especially if you are a McFly. In 1885, Mad Dog Tannen roped and unsuccessfully hung Marty. In 1955, Biff forced George to do his homework, and then Biff received a promotion in 1985 by taking credit for George’s work. In 2015, Griff Tannen chased after and attacked Marty with an adjustable bat. It’s just best to steer clear of a Tannen…in any century.
Diaz and Tannen share the same “F-you” mentality, but it’s Diaz’s actions that really make the comparison more apropos. Diaz bullies with the best of them, taunting opponents in-ring, throwing shoes at Diego Sanchez, and helping mob Mayhem Miller in the Bash in Nash. And, like Tannen, Diaz has constantly had to reinvent himself to stay on top of the bullying heap, becoming one of the most well-rounded fighters in the game.
1. FREDERICK “OGRE” PALOWASKI
Revenge of the Nerds
Ogre made a living out of picking on nerds. While he wasn’t as pretty as QB Stan Gable, Ogre was the key cog to the jocks’ campus-wide success. Ogre did the dirty work when it came to crushing Gilbert and the rest of the Lambda Lambda Lambdadorks, setting the bar by threatening the nerdy dean, sending pigs to ruin geek parties, and tossing dweebs through windows. The only thing that seemed to phase him was a little liquid heat in his jockstrap.
The Fertitta brothers may pull the purse strings behind closed doors, but White is the man doing all the dirty work out front. The UFC president can make or break a fighter’s career, often banishing agitators to Siberian-like promotions. However, without his foresight, there isn’t TUF, Bud Light sponsorship, or $100k Fight of the Night bonuses. The future may find the fighters wielding more power, but for now, White is the face of MMA, and promoting it worldwide will require he continues to play the role of the bully.