100 fighter nickname origins, Part II
For 20 years UGer ix3623 spoke with fighters and gathered facts, with an eye towards publishing an ebook of no-filler MMA facts to sell on Amazon. Then he was told by an Attorney friend that books like these, where you make money and talk about other people, even if they are fact, can get you sued. Since he doesn't want to be sued, he is posting content from it here for the UG, including the origin of hundreds of fighter nicknames.
101. “Hype or Die” is not just Pat “HD” Barry's Twitter and UG forum handle, but it also represents what the two letters in his nickname mean.
102. Keith Jardine on his nickname “The Dean of Mean”: “Because when you get into the fight, when you're sparring and when you fight, that's when you put your right face on, and that's when it counts. Being mean is not about walking around just being mean to people, it's just about the way you carry yourself with adversity more than anything.”
103. Karo Parisyan on his nickname “The Heat”: “I didn't want to be called the Mongoose or the Lion or whatever every fighter calls himself. A lot of fans started yelling,'Heat. Karo The Heat.' And I was like,'Great.' I fight with a lot of intensity. I guess The Heat says a lot about my fighting style. Bell to bell, I'm going 100 miles an hour. I'm all over (my opponent) until he taps out,then I'll shake his hand and walk away. The Heat.”
104. Nick “The Promise” Ring on his nickname : ” 'The Promise Ring' was actually a term coined by my good friend Darcy who started calling me that, I thought it was funny so I started using it as my nickname when I started fighting pro-boxing matches and it stuck.”
105. Gilbert Melendez's nick-name “El Nino” was coined by Japanese Shooto sports broadcasters who compared Gilbert's fighting style to a storm–a storm that wipes out everything in its path.
106. Wesley Correira on how he got his nickname “Cabbage” : “When I was younger, I used to look like a little Cabbage Patch Kid. That nickname just stuck.”
107. Rafael Cavalcante on his nickname “Feijao” : ” My older brother's nickname was actually Feijao, and people used to call me little Feijao. From there the nickname stuck.” Note: Feijao means bean in Portuguese.
108. Melvin Manhoef on how he got his nickname “No Mercy” : ” I got this nick name after my fight against Ladislav Zak. I knocked him out but the referee told me to continue, so I didn't stop and just kept on punching him. So that's why they gave me the name No Mercy.”
109. Liz Carmouche on how she got her nickname “Girl-Rilla” : ” When I first started training mixed martial arts at the San Diego Combat Academy, they joked that I was as strong as a gorilla. Someone started calling me the “Girl-Rilla” and I've been called it ever since. I've grown to like it. I like the name my fans have given themselves better – they call themselves the “Lizbos”.”
110. Dave Herman on he got his his nickname “Pee Wee” :” Most MMA fighters all have the same kind of nickname. First name, look how much of a bad ass I am, last name. Originally I did not want a nickname but one day people were messing around and throwing out some really stupid ones and I was going along with it and suggested that. It stuck and I've been Pee We ever since.”
111. Jason Miller on how he got his nickname “Mayhem” : ” That`s what people who know me call me, or if you seen me flip out, and go ninja on someone, you know, blow them right outta their shoes. I used to be a loose canon, but I now keep in all inside the cage, which is a dangerous thing for the man standing across from me. It`s just who I am. I talk mayhem, I fight mayhem, and I brush my teeth mayhem. My boys didn`t take long to slap that one on me, and I`ve grown into quite nicely.”
112. Nick Newell on how he got his nickname “Notorious” : ” Notorious.” I know they say you’re not suppose to give yourself a nickname, but I decided I’d do it anyway, just so I didn’t end up with something dumb like “the one-armed wonder.”
113. Manny Gamburyan's cousin Karo Parisyan nicknamed him “Pitbull” for the tenacity he displayed in his fights. His nickname was changed to “Anvil” for his UFC career because “Pitbull” was already taken by other UFC fighters such as Andrei Arlovski.
114. Cris Santos on how she got her nickname “cyborg” : ” I had my first fight for chute box and they were trying to find a nickname for me. For my second fight I was dating Evangelista Cyborg so I took his last name as my nickname and that was a huge responsibility for me and after that fight it just stuck.”
115. Cutman “Stitch” Duran on how he got his nickname : ” That happened a long time ago in California. Dave Rooney made his debut and got a little cut. I was learning to be a cut man and I didn't have any medication so I put direct pressure and tape to closed the small cut. He said you saved me some stitches; I'm going to call you 'Stitch'.”
116. Marcus Davis on how he got the nickname “Irish Hand Grenade” : “”Started in 1994. An elderly man who used to come into the boxing gym I trained out of started calling me it. He said he knew someone with the same moniker and I looked and fought like him. One night I fought and they announce me as the IHG because my manager had them do it. Stuck ever since.”
Marcus Davis had to change his nickname to “The Celtic Warrior” for UFC 72 in Ireland. Davis : “I was told ‘The Irish Hand Grenade’ was not acceptable in Belfast [because] it would translate poorly. It’d be like calling yourself the Taliban Bomber and fighting in New York. So, it’s a temporary change implemented by the UFC. However, I will always be The Irish Hand Grenade when I fight in the U.S.”
117. Brad Imes on how he got his nickname “The Hillbilly Heartthrob” : “My friends and I were drunk and coming up with nicknames. Everyone thought that since I was from Missouri, we were without running water and everything… We were all thinking about a good name for me and someone shouted out Hillbilly and it popped in my head. How about Hillbilly Heartthrob? All my buddies called me gay.”
118. Joachim Hansen on how he got his nickname “Hellboy” : ” After training BJJ about 2 months at the Kampen BJJ Academy, a local tournament for the students was arranged and we had to sign our names on a whiteboard – and we were allowed to add nicknames. I was in a hurry because people were standing in line waiting to sign their names, so I had to come up with something brutal, and fast. I thought about signing “Hellhammer”, but I knew that name was already taken by the drummer in Mayhem(a Norwegian black metal band). I didn't want to be a ripoff, so I just put the marker to the whiteboard and wrote Hellboy. Far away in the distance of my imagination, I could hear a thousand valkyries singing. About a year later I walked past a comic book shop, and on the window there was a poster of Mike Mignola`s “Hellboy” smiling down at me .”
119. Rory MacDonald on who gave him his nickname “Waterboy” : “Just everyone at the gym. It's from the Adam Sandler movie. When I was young, I'd have the tendency if I got hit hard or was losing, I'd put my afterburners on. I'd try to put in 200 percent effort to come out on top, and that was sort of how they got “The Waterboy” out of it. I guess I looked how he looked when he was spazzing. I guess I reminded everyone of that.”
120. Roy Nelson on how he got the nickname “Big Country” : “I used to train a lot of UFC fighters and we were doing takedowns and I was taking everybody down and everybody thought I was like an Oklahoma wrestler from Iowa. Just for my wrestling ability and the nickname kind of stuck. Eric Pele gave it to me, he was like, “What's up, Big Country?” The more I fought it, the more it stuck but they thought I was a wrestler from Oklahoma or Iowa and that's how it came.”
121. Anthony Perosh's nickname is “Hippo”. The name came about because his BJJ game used to be mainly focussed on pressure and crushing from the top position, for that reason a few of his training partners often said “get off of me you hippo!” the name started being said more and more until it became his nickname.
122. Ian Freeman on how he got the nickname “The Machine” : ” Actually what happened was when I first started, I mean quite a lot of people do this now, but I used to go on the matt, people used to grapple with me. Then they used to get tired and walk off and I used to shout for the next person on, and then shout for the next person on. And I just kept on doing that, because I just wanted to keep on going. Then someone turned round one night and said ‘you’re like a machine you never stop’, and it didn’t stick but in a following session they were all in putting the matts down and everything and I walked in to ‘Here’s the machine’, ‘Alright Machine’ and it just stuck from there.”
123. Tito Ortiz on how he got his nickname “The Huntington Beach Bad Boy” : ” It was an alias given to me by my peers. I grew up in Huntington Beach during the punk rock years. I was the kid who didn’t really have anyone around to tell me what to do, so I pretty much did what I wanted to … and spoke the truth, which carried into UFC. I never thought of the repercussions that would come from being so outspoken. I just believed that I was representing myself. People always said I was a boy playing a man’s game, and I was. After six months of training I had my first fight. Then a year and a half later I became the world champion. I believe that was a product of hard work and dedication. As far as my bad boy image, it just progressed more and more and more with my bleached hair and flames on my shorts. I had that confidence not cockiness on my side. Being brash sold and I saw more opportunity to have that bad boy image.”
124. Takashi Otsuka, better known as Alexander “The diet butcher” Otsuka. He uses the name Alexander as an homage to wrestling gold medalist Alexander Karelin. He was in the first BattlArts, being one of their signature fighters and the “king pin” of BattlArts. “Diet Butcher” is the name of the product that he used to cut amounts of weight for an MMA fight. They'd become a sponsor for BattlARTS later on in 2000.
125. Genki Sudo on his nickname “Neo Samurai” : “Neo Samurai means having an ancient Samurai spirit in futuristic style, without the Samurai hairdo.”
126. Ben Saunders on his nicknames “Berserk” and “Killa B” : ” Well Berserk was one of my first nicknames. It was based off of one of my favorite Animes. My friends called me it cause I was always laid back and relaxed in my fights but if I got hit a few times or angry they said I would go “berserk”. Ha-ha. But my nickname is now “Killa B” which came from a situation that occurred on the street a few years ago. I smile a lot mainly because I am very confident and believe in myself and know what I am capable of. It has gotten me in to a lot of trouble at times. I just think anger and intimidation is over rated. Yeah, I can get loud and in your face to try and scare you in to backing down. But I don't look for nor do I try to start trouble. What usually happens is they take my calm laid back personality as weakness. People that try to get loud and intimidate me leads to just a bigger smile on my face. This happens to make people attack me or throw the first punch much more than if I got loud angry and in their face. I guess they get the vibe that I think they are a joke, as I usually do. LOL Well anyways this is one situation out of many where my smile agitated someone to the point where they decided to swing on me. I defended and countered this attack with a number of strikes. The next day at the academy my friend and teammate that was with me for the incident started telling the story to others. In his explanation he chose to say “Ben hit him with some Bee Stingers”. That in combination with my love for Rap/Hip Hop music including Wu-Tang Clan (Which by the way their album “Enter the Wu-Tang 36 Chambers” is one of my all time favorite CD's.) So long story short they started calling me “Killa B”. =) “
127. Antonio Silva on how he got his nickname “Big Foot” : ” That's because my feet are really big. I was a skinny guy, and my foot was larger than the rest of my body (laughs).
128. Julie Kedzie on how she got her nickname “Fireball” : “I was given the nickname by Greg Jackson; not because of my fighting style, but because of my temper, which can kind of go off in a moment's notice. Normally, I am a smiling idiot, but during one kickboxing practice, I was feeling a little more emotional than normal. Greg swept me and did a little victory dance when I hit the floor. I (and I am VERY ashamed of this, looking back) responded by rolling to one knee and punching him in the balls. Hence, “Fireball.”
129. Jorge Masvidal on his nickname “Gamebred” : “My brother gave it to me; he knew I was all into dogs. He suggested I call myself that. When I first started fighting, I didn’t have a lot of skill but I just had the willingness to fight. It didn’t matter if I was tired or hurt, I was just gonna keep fighting and fighting and fighting. That’s what Gamebred is. Also, all my life I have had a love and passion for Pitbulls. They are amazing dogs; so loyal and fierce. Those dogs would die for you. I have two myself… Nena and Mia;my two girls. I couldn't think of a better name to go with.”
130. Chad Mendes on how he got his nickname “Money” and why he had to drop his previous nickname “Money Shot” : “It actually used to be Money Shot,” said Mendes of his nickname. “I'm a big hunter and I like to fish a little bit; I'm a big outdoorsman. When I first got to Sacramento out of college, the day after graduation I loaded all my stuff into a U-Haul and just came up here. I had no stand up at all so basically I was super raw and all I had was my wrestling, so when we would come to the gym when we would do MMA sparring I was just taking down everyone, so they just started calling me 'Money Shot' because of my takedowns and also because I like to hunt and stuff so that's what it was. Then I got into the WEC and I got sponsored through Pepsi and stuff and because it's a derogatory term I had to drop the “shot” so now it's just “money.” “
131. Alistair Overeem on how he got his nickname “Demolition Man” : ” A friend of mine gave me that name, I was at his place playing video games and my manager called me up and told me that I should have a nickname. So my friend said you are the demolition man. I was like OK, so I called my manager and gave him that name and from then on it stuck, but now I like to be called simply; The Reem.”
132. Tra Tellingman on his nickname “Trauma” : “I got my right lung and muscles crushed in a traffic accident when I was one and half years old. But now there is no problem at all. My left lung was built up strongly to compensate for a loss of the right lung. I am not good at bench press, but there is no problem with muscles in my right arm. And punches are delivered by using the shoulder, so no problem. Every fighter has strengths and weaknesses. I am taking it as one of them, so nothing concerns me. To be sure, it might be difficult for me to be a model (laughing). When I stand up naked in front of the mirror, I feel I don't look good. I was always told, “you can't do it” because of my handicap, but I have been doing it anyway, confident that I can do it. Everybody is different, big guys, small guys, fat guys skinny guys. It happens that I have no right lung. But I am doing my best positively.”
133. Mark Munoz on how he got his nickname “Filipino Wrecking Machine” : “When I started MMA, I had the hardest time picking out a nickname and my manager decided to name me the Philippine Wrecking Machine. I didn’t like at first and when I decided to use it in a fight it stuck and people started to call me by it. Later it became ‘Filipino Wrecking Machine’ to be grammatically correct for Tagalog purposes. I got lip from the Filipino population saying the Philippine Wrecking Machine is not used in the right way. You're Filipino. You're not an inanimate object. So that's how it evolved and that's how I got my nickname. I think a lot of the people now in the UFC were given a nickname they didn't come up with it. Mine just kinda stuck. “
134. Kendall Grove on his nicknames “The Rainbow Warrior” and “Da Spyder” : ” Marc Laimon and Uly Gomez nicknamed me the “The Rainbow Warrior”. When my dad heard my original nickname, he thought I was gay. At the time, he was paying my rent and training dues and told me to change my name to “Da Spyder” or he’d cut me off. The name made sense, since I’m all arms and all legs, but I had to change the spelling when I found out that the champ Anderson Silva uses the same nickname.”
135. Tom Lawlor on how he got his nickname “Filthy” : “I could come up with a million different reasons why I have that nickname but if you ask any of my friends or any of the people I train with they can pretty much tell you that I sweat a lot, I smell bad and my hygiene leaves a lot to be desired. So there is a multitude of reasons but they all come back pretty much to the atrophy.'
146. Yoel Romero on his nickname “Soldier of God” : “I serve God and I am his servant and soldier to help spread the word about him.”
137. Sam Stout on how he got his nickname “Hands of Stone” : “It was originally on a fight night on a smaller show, and they called me Sam Stone. Shawn (Tompkins) just gave me the name. Early in my career, more so than now, I was more of a power puncher. A lot of my early fights I won by knock out. It was kind of when the name was given to me.”
138. Rick Story on how he got the nickname “The Horror'” : “My coach, Pat White, picked it out after he watched me fight a couple of times. He walked up to me and said, “I got it. The Horror Story.” I grinned and told him I liked it.”
139. Miesha Tate on her nickname “Cupcake” : “There are a couple of meanings, there are about three. The first one is simple, that I just love cupcakes. They’re so adorable and I just love them. Second, I love to bake, and I’ve been baking since I was a little girl. In my pass time, it is one of my favorite hobbies, so I even bake cupcakes for friends’ birthdays. Thirdly, and the most important reason or explanation behind it is after my loss to Ronda, I felt like I had outgrown my nickname of “Takedown” and I felt like I had become a well rounded fighter, so I didn’t want a nickname that was so hard like “The killer” or “The Terminator”. It had to be symbolic of my changing heart and how I had a more light hearted outlook to the sport. I wasn’t going to take it so seriously like I did with Ronda. It was at a point when I didn’t enjoy it and I wanted to have something that would explain that I had a love for the sport. So I was looking for a nickname, and I remember at the beginning of my career that there would be girls that would look at me and judge me, and say “That girl wears make up, and she wears dresses and she does her hair. She cannot be that tough, and I want to fight her”. I thought it was so rude and it used to tick me off and the other word to describe someone who you think is a pushover, that you’re going to walk through is cupcake! So basically they thought I was a cupcake, that I was a pushover and that they were going to beat me easily. And I was like “How dare you judge me on my appearance?” Just because I like to portray myself more femininely doesn’t mean I’m any less tough. It used to irritate me, but then I guess I decided to look at it differently and was like “You know what? It’s kind of funny actually. You underestimate me and see what happens. You have to be ready to go when that cage door closes, and I’m coming after you”.
140. Joseph Benavidez has a contest that lets fans pick a new nickname for him every fight. Joe on his numerous nicknames : ” I didn’t have a nickname, so everyone was giving me nicknames that they wanted me to use, especially in the gym with my teammates and everything. And so through not having a nickname, I gained many nicknames. I was always thinking about letting the fans choose it, just to do something different. It’s perfect for someone like me, because I’m a chameleon in the MMA world. I’m different every day and I’m different every fight. I may wear a different outfit. You never know what I’m going to wear and you never know what I’m going to do in a fight. I think it’s great to have these different personas. I was actually on the show with Larry Pepe and I said it was something I wanted to do, so he kind of spearheaded the deal. And so he made a poll and said we could do it right now, so I said let’s do it. So he made the first poll for me. I don’t know where it’s going to continue after this, but I’ve had a great reception from the fans. For this time I picked my five favorite nicknames, but the fans have been suggesting more and they have come up with some great ones, so for the next one I’m going to use two of theirs and three of mine and just see what happens. For this upcoming fight, the final voting was down to two nicknames I've been given from the gym, “The Juice Box” and “Beefcake,” which I've been called for a while. The two that the fans made up, the winners were “President Joe-bama” which I like because you can't get much bigger than the President, the head guy in charge. He's in control of everything. We've also got “The Joe-mo sapien” which for me was special because it's like the evolution of man. It was cool to be a Homo sapien, but now the Joe-mo sapien is coming along, we're evolving. I already have my own martial art of Joe-jitsu so I might as well have my own species of man.Joe B-Wan Kenobi was another one I was given.”
141. Cub Swanson : “Cub isn't my first name but all my family knows me by that name. My real name is Kevin Luke Swanson. I don't have a fight nickname. I was very close to having the announcer announce me as 'Killer Cub,' but never got around to talking to him about it. Members in the Greg Jackson camp gave that nickname (killer cub) to me. Cub was given to me by my older brother when I was an infant.”
142. Soa Palelei on how he got his nickname “The Hulk” : “My manager actually gave me the nickname. We were talking about names and he mentioned “The Hulk”. He said bro you're a machine and you need to be named “The Hulk” and its stuck since then and i actually do like the colour green so its worked out well and i think i represent the name well.”
143. Stephen Quadros on how he got his nickname “The Fight Professor” : ” I got the name “The Fight Professor” while I was calling the action at a K-1 show in Japan. Gary Cruz was doing the play-by-play and I was doing the color commentary with world kickboxing champion Earnest Hart Jr. While I was talking about one of the fighters, Earnest said something to the effect of, “Damn, you’re like ‘the fight professor’ or something.” We all laughed and the name stuck. I actually love teaching, whether it be educating people who listen to my commentary or while I am teaching a group class or training an actor for a film or TV show.”
144. James Thompson on his nicknames “Collosus” and “MegaPunk” : ” I got Colossus after a magazine guy said I reminded him of the Colossus of Rhoades (statue in Greece). Megapunk came from the Japanese fans. “Mega” as I am big and “Punk” as I am from UK where Punk music is from. I like it because the fans gave me the name. I use Megapunk in Japan but Colossus everywhere else.”
145. Tatsuya Kawajiri on how he got his nickname “Crusher” : ” One of the TV staff which was broadcasting Shooto gave me the nickname. It comes from the image of completely destroying your opponent.”
146. Yushin Okami on his nickname “Thunder” : “My nickname actually comes from a Japanese pro wrestler named Jushin 'Thunder' Liger. He is a great fighter, and our names rhymed so it stuck.”
147. Bob Schreiber on his nicknames “Dirty Bob” and “Bob the Terrible” : “I'm known as Bob The Terrible in Europe, while in Japan and the US they call me Dirty Bob. Because I'll do anything to win the fight. So, if during a match I find myself thinking “this is not really going where I want it to”, I'll stick a finger in a guys' eye. If that what it takes..(laughs out loud). So that may explain the nickname. Because I've sure as hell done that more than a few times, hahaha !”
148. Eric Esch on how he got his nickname “Butterbean” : “Well when I was young my friends and I entered a “Toughman Contest” and that's where I got my nickname “Butterbean”, because I weighed 420 pounds and I had to eat butterbeans to bring my weight down to enter this contest. So I won that one. Then I started to enter all these Toughman Contests everywhere and knocking people out. I won eighteen of them (Toughman Contest). They wouldn't let me fight in them no more so I turned professional.”
149. Enson Inoue on his nickname “Yamato Damashi” : ” It stands for the Samurai spirit. The Japanese media gave me this name.
150. Joe Doerkson on how he got his nickname “El Dirte” : “There was a movie, Joe Dirt, that came out a few years ago. The guys I was training with started calling me Joe Dirt, and other variations of that name. It just kind of stuck, and now I can't get rid of it. Some of my friends just call me Dirty, now.”
151. Jonathan Goulet on how he got his nickname “Road Warrior” : “I hit the road in 2003 and went to fight in Davenport, Iowa and Hawaii without anyone with me – coaches, cornermen, trainers, no one at all. My next fight after that was against Jeff Joslin at TKO 14. The name of the event was “Road Warriors” and after the fight my manager called and gave me the nickname.”
152. Gabe Ruedigar on how he got his nickname “Godzilla” : ” I was training in Japan with a really small Japanese guy. Some of my Japanese friends were sitting there and laughing. When I got done training, I asked “What's so funny?” They pointed at my arm which has a dragon tattoo on it and said “Godzilla, Godzilla!” I tried explaining that it was a dragon, but they found it amusing and every time I would go train, they would call me Godzilla. I told the story when I got home and the nickname stuck.”
153. Junie Browning on how he got his nickname “The Lunatik” : ” Dana actually gave the nickname to me at the tryouts for TUF in Boston. I was talking a lot of sh*t and Dana would say “where is my lunatik?”
154. Bryan Caraway on his nickname “Kid Lightning” : ” It was “The Kid” for a long time because I started fighting when I was only 19 so Dennis Hallman nicknamed me “The Kid” but everybody I trained with said I'm lightning fast so now its “Kid Lightning.”
155. Seth Petruzelli on his nickname “The Silverback” : ” Well there's a couple of reasons I am called that. The one is when I'm really tired in grappling I walk on my knuckles and knees and my belly kind of sticks out. People call me pasta belly as well so I'm known to have a protruding belly so when I walk on my hands and knees going from person-to-person in grappling on my knuckles and knees it looks like I'm a silverback gorilla crawling around on the ground. The other one, well a lot of people don't know this but the silverback actually has the smallest penis-to-body ratio in the animal kingdom so I don't like to say that that's one of the main reasons why but it's probably the main reason.”
156. Roxanne Modafferi on how she got the nickname “The Happy Warrior” : “The nickname “The Happy Warrior” was giving to me by a long-time fan and friend on my MySpace account. In one of my blog comments last year, he wrote, “You are the happy warrior!” I've been trying to get a nickname for years, but somehow “The Crusher” didn't exactly fit the bill. I think this nickname suits me perfectly! I always try to look on the bright side.”
157. Din Thomas on how he got his nickname “Dinyero” : ” Din is my first name. It's pronounced “Dean” for those that don't know. People I have known for years still pronounce my name “din” like it rhymes with “win”. However, my name is spelt D-I-N but it is pronounced “Dean” as if it rhymes with “green”. Yero is my middle name. So technically it's not really a nickname. It's birth given. When I rapped, that's what my crew called me.”
158. Marloes Coenen on how she got her nickname “Rumina” : ” I got it from the Japanese media/fans. I think it has to do with my flying armbar technique back in 2000. I'm still a big fan of Rumina Sato. So it is a huge compliment to me.”
159. Nick Lentz on how he got the nickname “The Carnie” : ” I was in Japan and on the last day I went to the arcades. By the end of the day I had won around 30 different things from stuffed animals to remote controlled cars. As I was walking back to the hotel, Japanese people were clapping for me and congratulating me on my epic claw machine prowess. Then when I got back to the hotel a women that spoke English explained to me what everything was and after that I got the name because of how good I was at all the carnival type games.”
160. Kim Couture on how she got the nickname “Sugar Free” :” The guys at Xtreme Couture started calling me “Sugar Free” because I'm blunt and always speaks my mind. I never “sugar coat” anything.”
161. Michael Schiavello on how he got the nickname “The Voice” : “I was given the nickname The Voice in 1996, '97, somewhere around there by a guy called Andy Raymond, a very famous rugby commentator, and former fight commentator in Australia for FOX Sports. Andy and I were working together at FOX Sports at the time and he originally deemed me 'The Voice Behind the Violence' and eventually that got cut down to just 'The Voice' so you can blame or thank Andy Raymond of FOX Sports Australia for that one.”
162. Ben Askren on how he got the nickname “Funky” : “It was my college wrestling style. There is this wrestling style called 'Funk'. I started getting good at it and people just started calling me 'Funky'.”
163. Tony Bonello on how he got the nickname “Gun” : “Mario Sperry gave it to me in 1997. I was training with Carlson Gracie, Murilo Bustamante and Mario Sperry. Sperry was watching Murilo holding the pads for me and just started calling me the gun. It stuck and all the guys in Brazil never said Tony when they spoke to me they just said “hey gun” and now it has become my nickname.”
164. Thiago Alves on how he got his nickname “Pitbull” : ” My first master, Evilasio Feitosa gave me this nickname. I think it was due to the way that I fought in my ValeTudo fights in Brazil. Fury!”
165. Houston Alexander on how he got the nickname “The Assassin” : “I got my nickname from Snocky (a announcer that does a lot of Monte Cox shows) who called me that once because I would just come to the cage, eliminate my opponent and leave.”
166. Drew Fickett on his nicknames “The Master” and “Night Rider” : “I prefer The Master just cause it's martial arts based. I feel I've mastered submitting people, so it seems appropriate, but I think Night Rider is better with the fans. The fans gave me Night Rider, that's why I use it. I just scream “Night Rider” sometimes, which is something me and my buddy James Taylor came up with when we were wrestling in college. We were watching NFL films, and this guy, John Randell, used to play for the Minnesota Vikings. He's a linebacker, and he'd pounce back and forth screaming NIGHT RIDER at the opposing quarterback. We thought it was the coolest thing ever, and we've been screaming it for 10 years. Some of the fans heard me, and they liked it, so…”
167. Bart Palaszewski on how he got his nickname “Bartimus” : ” I was about 18 years old and I fought in Peoria. I was supposed to fight a guy in my weight class and he didn’t show. There was this other guy who didn’t have an opponent either but he was at 185. So we both didn’t have a match so we figured why the hell not fight? I lost a decision but it was a hell of a fight. Literally a month later I went to the Xtreme Challenge Trials and one of the guys (at the show) just goes, “Hey little Gladiator what’s going on?” He saw my fight and I guess he was one of the promoters for the trials. I told the story to Jeff Curran who was and still is my instructor and he just thought of it. “Bartimus” came from the Little Gladiator. Now it’s to a point where my parents call me “Bartimus.”
168. Charlie Brenneman on how he got his nickname “The Spaniard” : “I was a spanish major in college, and former spanish teacher.” Ray Sefo on how he got his nickname “Sugarfoot” : ” 'Sugar' Ray Leonard has always been one of my favorite boxers. That was just at the time when I had started Kickboxing. Then with my name being Ray, my girlfriend put it together. One night during class while training and concentrating on kicking skills, I was kicking faster than the lighter weights and that was how the 'foot' part was added in. About six months later I heard that there was actually another 'Sugarfoot', Peter Cunningham.”
169. Jeff Joslin on how he got his nickname “The Inferno” : ” I was sitting around with a bunch of friends drinking some beer and somebody said that I need to have a nickname. So everyone started throwing around names. They ranged from Dr. Jeckle, the monster, the gentleman (laughs) and many more bad ones. Somebody mentioned the Inferno. It sounded cool but we asked him why. He mentioned something about watching a huge fire from a distance attracts your attention but from close range it is deadly and you fighting to escape it. We stuck with that one from then on and it turned out to be a pretty cool concept in terms of making logos and stuff.
170. Chad Griggs on how he got his nickname “The Gravedigger” : ” It's really just training with a lot of guys that I've worked with for a bunch of years and I guess basically my brawling tactics when we're sparring, the heavy hands and dropping people. It got to the point where people were getting gunshy and they brought new people in and you'd drop somebody and it started, “He's 'The Gravedigger.' He's gonna put you down,” and it just kinda stuck. One guy threw it out there and that's all it took. We just took it and ran with it.”
171. Lyle Beerbohm on his nickname ” Fancy Pants” : “My mom loves to sew, and one day I was helping her move some material into her sewing room, and I came across this pink, yellow and green spandex material. And I was like, “Mom, you've got to make me a pair of fight shorts out of this.” At first she didn't think I was serious, but I was like, “Mom, I really want you to make me a pair of shorts.” So she made them, and then when I had my next fight, I went into the ring wearing a pair of sweat pants, and when I pulled off the sweat pants and was there in my mom's shorts, the crowd went crazy. Girls were whistling, guys were laughing, everybody was hooting and hollering, and my dad was like, “You have something there.” And that's why I'm known as Fancy Pants.”
172 Elvis Sinosic on how he got his nickname “The King of Rock 'n Rumble” : “It was given to me after my first ever professional fight. I can't remember if it was the commentators at the show or the journalists doing the write up afterwards but it has stuck with me ever since. Obviously it is a play on the Elvis Presely the King of Rock n Roll.”
173. Forrest Petz on how he got the nickname “Meat Cleaver” : “My old roommate, he was goofing around. At the time I fought for King of the Cage, there was a promoter that used me a lot named Cory Fisher, and he called me the Hit Man. In my mind, the only Hit Man was Thomas Hearns, the boxer, he retired the nickname. My Buddy Joe said ” We gotta give you something different, something people will remember, “the Meat Cleaver”. Even then I just joked around with it, didn't think it would be my nickname. I was filling out my info for a fight, and my buddy filled it out while I was getting my medicals, I had no idea he wrote that nickname down.”
174. Eugene Jackson on how he got the nickname “The Wolf”: “They say I am like the wolf because I am a predator. I stalk my prey.”
175. Jamie Varner on also being given the nickname “The Worm” : ” Ok, The Worm was not by my choice. That was actually my trainers, Trevor and Todd Lally. They actually went behind my back and gave me the nickname The Worm before my very first UFC fight and I never wanted that nickname, I never agreed to that. They gave it to me because in wrestling and in grappling, I scramble really well so I'm hard to submit. And they were like: Oh he worms out of everything, he's the worm, he's The Worm! I'm like, No. I'm not gonna be The Worm. And so when I got my contract and all the fighter information that they filled out for me, they filled out my nickname as The Worm. And that's how I got it. I told the WEC when I signed with them that it was not my nickname and they were not to put it on their website. And so far they haven't done it.”
176. Jason Lambert on how he got his nickname “The Punisher” : ” The first instructor I had was Mike Markanson, and he was driving down to Torrance to train with Royce. We were training in his (Mike's) garage, I had trained with him for 2 years. It was all just garage. He had the Punisher comic book posters in his garage, and some of the training partners, one of my good friends Nick Moritas said “That's you, you're the Punisher”. Because of just the way that I would roll was kind of relentless. So, that's what they ended up calling me. I tried to shake it and it stuck. That's how that came about, was just way back in the early, early days of me taking jiu-jitsu in the garage of my first instructor.”
177. Benji Radach on how he got the nickname “Razor” : ” Dennis Hallman gave that to me a long time ago. It was because of my fighting style and I cut people.”
178. Denis Kang on how he got his nickname “Super Korean” : ” Actually it was kinda by chance. My brother Julien and I were at a sauna and being filmed by XTM. This particular sauna was pretty hot and we decided to have a contest on who could stay the longest, I won and when I came out of the sauna I told the camera I was a super Korean. I was probably pretty dehydrated and not thinking straight. lol”
179. Jeremy Jackson on how he got his nickname “Scorpion” : “Fans and team mates started calling me that. I had a tattoo on my chest of a scorpion, and people said I would sting people with my hands.”
180. Phil Baroni on how he got his nickname “The New York Bad Ass” : “What you see is what you get. I didn’t come up with anything, I am what I am. As for the nick name it was given to me by Joel Gold of Full Contact Fighter after one of my wins.”
181. Chris Brennan on how he got the nickname “The Westside Strangler” : “A lot of my fights ended with the Guillotine, even in training I used to use the choke on a lot of guys. It kind of changed now because I like to arm lock and kimura everybody, but when I started it was because I choked everybody. I think Mikey Burnett had the Eastside Assassin so one of my students took that and called me the Westside Strangler.”
182. Alex Caceres' nickname, “Bruce Leeroy” stems from the character in the film The Last Dragon.
183. Anthony Pettis on how he got his nickname “Showtime” : “I didn’t have a nickname at the time, and Duke said, ‘Man, you put on a show every time you fight. I’m going to call you ‘Showtime.’ My style is flashy, so every time I fight, it’ll be worth watching; everybody wants to see the big knockout or the cool submission.”
184. Felice Herrig on how she got her nickname “Lil Bulldog” : “I've always had a very aggressive fighting style, straight forward, I never pull back. My first boxing coach was holding mitts, I did no lateral movement, no moving back, he knew I was strong, and he said “Sometimes you have to step back a bit, you're like a bulldog, you just want to go straight forward!” My boyfriend at the time said “She's like a bulldog but a little bulldog.” Next time I fought the ring announcer asked if I had a nickname, and my ex-boyfriend shouted little bulldog. I told the Ring Announcer not to say it, but he did; I was kind of embarrassed, but [it was] very fitting, and I knocked out the girl in 58 seconds. It feels kind of cliché to have a nickname, but it fits.”
185. Carla Esparza got her nickname from her coach Colin Oyama. He had seen Esparza sneaking treats at the gym and dubbed her “Cookie Monster.”
186. Tonya Evinger on how she got her nickname “Triple Threat” : “Triple threat”..its pretty self explanatory, I am decent at every aspect of the MMA game and I've had experience in everything. And that based off of the idea that wrestling, jiu jitsu, and boxing/muay thai are the three dominate styles in mma.”
187. Diego Brandao on how he got his nickname “Ceara” : “I was born in a city called Ceara and later moved to Manaus, Amazonas. In Brazil my name is Diego Ceara — people call me that because I come from there.”
188. Rosi Sexton is nicknamed “The Surgeon” because she has a Ph.D in theoretical computer science and is also an osteopath.
189. Jessamyn Duke on how she got her nickname “The Gun” : “In our gym it’s tradition that our coach gives the fighters their nicknames. I ended up with the gun because of my last name. So, everyone knows that John Wayne is known as the Duke. But a lot of people don’t know that the boxer Tommy Morrison is the nephew of John Wayne. In Rocky IV he played Tommy “The Machine” Gunn. So, my coach felt that since my last name was Duke that it was appropriate that my nickname be “The Gun” because of this connection. At first, I wasn’t sure I liked it, but honestly it’s really grown on me. I feel like I’ve kind of embodied it a bit.”
190. Jessica Eye on how she got her nickname “Evil” : “It originally came from my dad, who rode with bike gangs when I was younger. They called him 'The Evil One.' It's like the dichotomy. I don't want to be an evil person, but I'm evil when I'm in there because I want to win.”
191. Jessica Andrade on how she got her nickname “Bate Estaca (pile driver) ” : ““I got the nickname after I did a piledriver in a BJJ competition when I first started. The maneuver is illegal in jiu-jitsu so I got disqualified for it. It was my first tournament and I got caught in a bad spot and, not knowing what to do, my instant reaction was to pick the girl up and throw her on the ground… but that is an illegal move and got me removed from the competition. Of course, all my teammates and friends thought that was amusing that I did that and got myself DQed so everybody started calling me “Piledriver”. And you know how it is…if you don’t like being called something, that is what is going to stick.”
192. Paul Healy on how he got his nickname “Bam Bam” : “I got that nickname growing up in Salem. My friends used to say that after a few drinks my eyebrows would sag and my alter ego, “Bam Bam”, would come out. I would become extremely clumsy and would always end up breaking something or falling into/out of something. The nickname just stuck through the years and I think it fits my fighting style quite nice.”
193. Charles Oliveira on how he got his nickname “Do Bronx” : “Do Bronx means neighbor. They use to say there is the kid from the neighborhood.”
194. Mike Pyle on how he got his nickname “Quicksand” : “That’s the way that I like to fight and why I got the nickname “Quicksand” given to me. The harder you’re fighting in the quicksand, the worse it’s gonna get and you’re gonna keep sinking. I always try to set things up and I don’t try to bully my way into submissions because then they know it’s coming. And there’s no better way to get a nice, fast, and clean sub then to go with the flow and try to keep my technique sound where I know that if I pressure a guy into one certain way, he’s gonna go another way to get out, and that’s what I’m looking for. It’s like going fishing. I’m trying to outsmart him and hopefully I’ll hook him.”
195. Ryan Ford on how he got his nickname “The Real Deal” : “I was given the nickname The Real Deal from a few of the guys I hung around with. They saw how hard I trained and the focus I had on becoming a fighter and one day were like Ryan you are The Real Deal.”
196. “Pat Curran first gained widespread notoriety thanks to his appearance on Season 2 of the short-lived TapouT reality show, where he was given the nickname “Paddy Mike” by the show’s host, Mask. Pat is the cousin of Jeff Curran.”
197. Tarec Saffiedine on how he got his nickname “Sponge” : “My former belgian coach gave it to me because I would learn techniques really quick, I would absorb them like a sponge.”
198. Nate Marquardt was given his nickname “The Great” by a former girlfriend.
199. Douglas Lima on how he got his nickname “The Phenom” : “I got the nickname maybe because I was 18 at the time and my record was 8-0, I don’t ever tell that my nickname is “the Phenom” because I don’t think I am one. Maybe one day, but there’s still people that call me that and I don’t mind it at all. “
200. Paul Kelly on how he got his nickname “Tellys” : “I hate the nickname ‘Tellys' – make sure you put that in there! I want rid of it! Anthony McGann (Wolfslair boss) stuck that on me as well. After my fight with Lee Whitehead, he said I was swaggering round like I was holding a television set under each arm. I hated the nickname, so obviously it stuck didn't it? You know what its like, if everyone knows you hate it they all use it even more. I swear if I hear the ring announcer call me Tellys I will walk out of the place! In my first UFC fight, Joe Rogan mentioned that I used to work in a cake shop and that i am a bit too fond of my doughy treats.I never worked in a cake shop! I get asked this in every interview! Anthony McGann made that up and put it in my bio that he gave the UFC, then Joe Rogan mentioned it before my fight. Anthony calls my brother Gary 'Quasimodo' and 'hunchback. Gary sometimes fights on the Cage Gladiators show in Liverpool. Last time he fought he told the promoter he was going home if the MC introduced him as Gary the Hunchback.”