Keep in mind when you vote, being the most memorable loser does not mean we are basing this on who did the worst in the UFC, since some of the men in this list appeared more than once in the UFC, or even had fights elsewhere (although we are only basing this on this time period and not later). This category is to determine who left the biggest imprint with fans after they lost.
So without further ado, here are the nominees for Most Memorable Loser:
Harold Howard -“If you’re coming on – come on!”, said Harold Howard as he removed his Terminator-style sunglasses and stared at the camera with his beady Canadian eyes during his promo video at UFC 3. A black belt in multiple styles of traditional Japanese JuJitsu and Karate, his first fight was against a man with a name so great he should have been a pro-wrestler, Roland Payne. After defeating him in a wild brawl, Howard and his mullet advanced to face Royce Gracie in the semi-finals. Thanks to a rough beating courtesy of Kimo Leopoldo, Royce threw in the towel, allowing Howard to stay fresh and head into the finals. There, he met alternate Steve Jennum, who replaced an injured Ken Shamrock, and put on an impressive display by doing a flipping scissors kick and then getting punched in the face by Jennum until he submitted. Howard returned once more to the promotion at UFC 7 to fight Mark Hall, where he once again submitted due to strikes, but looked much more prepared than he did in his debut.
Joe Son – Didn’t I tell you in the last post that we would talk more about Joe Son?First appearing at UFC 3 alongside his training partner and Prayer buddy, Kimo Leopoldo, Son returned at UFC 4 not as a coach – but as a fighter. Donning red tights that left little to the imagination, the 5′ 4″ 250 lb. master of JoeSonDo took on another memorable runner-up from a previous event – Keith Hackney. Fans loved Hackney from the start, much like how they loathed Son as soon as he stumbled out of the backstage area with a giant wooden crucifix across his back that he could hardly carry. Son had little to offer in terms of fighting skills, and once the bout hit the mats, Hackney finished the fight with multiple well-placed punches into Son’s testicles. Just like Joe Son, the fight was short and ugly, but left a deep mark with fans (along with deep bruising in Son’s groin).
Andy Anderson -The man to whom this Award Show has named their trophies after, Anderson was originally the owner of a Hooters type bar. A fan of the UFC shows, he made a deal with the promotion to send them ladies to be Ring Card girls, and somehow used this power to get a shot at actually fighting. Nicknamed “The Hammer”, Anderson had one fight in the UFC against Jon Hess, where the master of SAFTA made short work of him. While Andy never appeared again in the cage, wearing his black licorice swirl tights and weightlifting gym tank-top, he would appear many times after on-screen, just hanging around and keeping his ladies in line as they held up signs at other UFC shows.
Paul Varelans -Varelans set foot into the UFC cage many times, where sometimes he won, and sometimes he lost. A perennial runner-up and fan favorite, Varelans amassed a record of 4-4 in the UFC with losses to Kimo, Dan Severn, Marco Ruas, and Tank Abbott, making him no slouch. A truly tough guy with size and strength, Varelans was always a bridesmaid and never the bride when it came to winning tournaments, but the fans still loved watching “The Polar Bear” fight, and that’s what makes him a memorable loser!
Art Jimmerson -The stories about Art Jimmerson’s entry into the world of No-Holds-Barred combat are many, but Art Davie has summed it up best with his explanation. Jimmerson began his boxing career in 1985, and by the time he retired, held a respectable record of 51-33. In 1993, Jimmerson had the honor of being part of the first-ever eight-man tournament at the debut of this odd little event called “The Ultimate Fighting Championship”. Sadly for him, his first opponent was BJJ black belt, Royce Gracie. Art had already been paid in advance just to show up to the event, more than most fighters would get for actually fighting, and when Art heard who he was fighting, he made an odd decision about his fight gear. Jimmerson decided the best way to deal with Royce would be to use his jab to keep him at bay, and eventually knock him out for the win. To do so, Jimmerson wore a single boxing glove on his left hand to protect himself while pummeling Gracie. Unfortunately, things did not turn out as planned, and Royce easily took him down and mounted him to the point that Jimmerson realized he was helpless and tapped out to positional superiority. The man, the myth, the glove.
Fred Ettish – Poor Fred Ettish. Here is the tale of a man that had the best intents in the world, and ended up a broken wreck in a little over three minutes. An extremely last-minute alternate for another alternate fighter that got hurt in the prelims of UFC 2, Ettish was backstage volunteering as a fight-wrangler and hoping to draw attention to himself enough to get a shot in the cage. Fate was kind to Ettish, as he got his chance after all, and within 10 minutes, got his corner together and prepared for his MMA debut against Johnny Rhodes. Sadly, he was outmatched by Rhodes, and spent the duration of his time in the octagon being beaten senseless by his opponent while looking clueless throughout the entire fight. Ettish would get his redemption over a decade later, but his first fight was a horrific experience for himself and anyone watching that night.
Emmanuel Yarbrough – We saved the biggest for the last, as Manny was (and remains) the heaviest competitor to ever set foot inside the octagon. Although he was listed as weighing 600 lbs. for his debut at UFC 3, producer Campbell McLaren has stated that Yarbrough actually weighed a whopping 720 lbs! An American Sumo wrestler, as well as Division I college wrestler, Yarbrough mainly used his size advantage against 200 lb. Keith Hackney, shoving his opponent so hard that it actually broke the octagon door. Unfortuantely for Yarbrough, he was not too good at defending punches, and after eating a strike that dropped him on all-fours, the smaller fighter pounced like a pitbull and blasted away at the huge sumo until Yarbrough tapped out. In the first true David VS Goliath match in the UFC, Goliath had lost, but has stayed with fans forever thanks to his bizarre highlight-reel worthy fight at UFC 3.
Thanks to June M. Williams for our Awards graphics.
Place your vote by writing in the comments, and let us know why you made your decision. Best answers will get read during our OSMMA Review Award Show episode!
“The OSMMA Review Awards, Volume 1” only represents UFC 1 through Ultimate Ultimate 1996, so remember that when placing your vote, as anything other than what was listed in the categories will be ignored, and the voter shall be promptly flogged. Stay constantly vigilant as more categories become announced, or take a peek at the stream to make sure you placed your vote in all twelve categories!
About the author