Kenneth Wayne Shamrock (born Kenneth Wayne Kilpatrick on February 11, 1964) is an American mixed martial arts (MMA) fighter, a UFC Hall of Famer and also a professional wrestler. He is best known for his MMA career and his participation in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Pancrase and Pride Fighting Championships. Shamrock emerged as one of the biggest stars in the history of mixed martial arts, headlining over 15 main events and co-main events in the Ultimate Fighting Championship and Pride Fighting Championships during the course of his career and set numerous pay per view records with his drawing power.
Shamrock was the first UFC Superfight Champion; the title was eventually renamed the UFC Heavyweight Championship when weight categories were introduced to the UFC. He was also the first MMA Heavyweight Champion in Japan, winning the title of King of Pancrase. During his reign as the UFC Superfight Champion, he was widely considered the #1 mixed martial artist in the world. Shamrock was also ranked by Inside MMA as one of the top 10 greatest mixed martial arts fighters of all time.
Shamrock is the founder of one of the most successful camps in mixed martial arts history, the legendary fight camp the Lion's Den, which is famous for being the most dominant fight camp in the early UFC. He is also the older adopted brother of former UFC champion Frank Shamrock.
Pancrase Hybrid Wrestling (1993–1996)Edit
The origins of Shamrock's mixed martial arts career began in the Japanese pro wrestling organization Fujiwara Gumi. On October 4, 1992, at the Tokyo Dome, a rare legitimate match was booked. Wayne Shamrock, as Ken was known in Japan, faced world kickboxing champion Don Nakaya Nielsen. Shamrock took Nielsen down immediately and submitted him with an arm lock in 45 seconds. The success of this match made young pro wrestlers Shamrock, Masakatsu Funaki and Minoru Suzuki question what they had been told since breaking into predetermined wrestling: that nobody would ever pay to see real matches.
Shamrock, Funaki and Suzuki then spearheaded a group of pro wrestlers and decided to abandon everything people had told them about real matches not being marketable. They formed a promotion called Pancrase, named by ’60s wrestling star Karl Gotch after the sport of Pankration in the ancient Olympics, which combined all different forms of fighting into one sport. Using pro wrestling rules – no closed fisted punching to the head (closed fisted punches were allowed to the body), breaks on the ropes, but fighting for real – Shamrock beat his friend and mentor, MMA legend Masakatsu Funaki by arm-triangle choke in the main event of the very first Pancrase show on September 21, 1993. There was some irony in this, as it was Funaki who had, along with Karl Gotch and Yoshiaki Fujiwara, taught Shamrock the art of catch wrestling during their days as professional wrestlers. The show drew an enthusiastic sellout crowd of 7,000 fans, who didn’t know what they would be seeing, but when it was over, both the fans and media heavily praised this new event. After this win, Shamrock became Pancrase's #1 fighter, a title that he held for almost his entire Pancrase career.
Shamrock continued to shine in Pancrase, defeating world kickboxing champion (and future UFC Heavyweight Champion) Maurice Smith, Alex Cook, Masakatsu Funaki and Manabu Yamada in the toughest mixed martial arts tournament held until that point in history, the 24 man King of Pancrase Tournament, to become the first King of Pancrase world champion before crowds of 11,000 fans both nights at Tokyo’s Sumo Hall in December 1994.
Shamrock, now an enormous star in Japan, defended his King of Pancrase title against MMA legend Bas Rutten in 1995, submitting him with a kneebar. He lost the title in his next fight against Pancrase co-creator, Minoru Suzuki, in a match that has been rumored to be a work. According to the rumor, Pancrase was afraid of their organization looking weak if their champion in Shamrock were to lose to Dan Severn at UFC 6 and asked Shamrock to lose the title to Suzuki. Shamrock has been asked about this in interviews and while he has not confirmed a work, he has not denied it either. Other sources, including the book "UFC's Ultimate Warriors: The Top 10", by Jeremy Wall, have gone as far as to confirm that the Suzuki fight was indeed a work.
Shamrock eventually had a falling out with Pancrase management in early 1996 and left the company to compete in the UFC full time. Shamrock left Pancrase with only two legitimate (non-worked) losses in 18 legitimate fights.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (1993–1996)Edit
After the first three Pancrase shows, Shamrock returned to America to fight in the newly formed Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), despite fighting in Japan just four days earlier. Masakatsu Funaki served as Shamrock's head trainer for the event. The event was held under a one-night tournament format with minimal rules (in contrast to Pancrase, which had extensive rules and a gentleman's agreement not to strike on the ground). Shamrock's first opponent was Patrick Smith, a kickboxer and karate champion who boasted an inflated record of 250-0. In the opening seconds of the fight, Smith came forward and threw a leg kick, but Shamrock shot off the kick for a double-leg takedown and put the striker on the canvas. Following some ground and pound, Shamrock seized Smith’s right leg and dropped back, applying a heel hook. In seconds, Smith screamed in agony and tapped out. This was ironic, because in the fight introductions, Smith claimed to be immune to pain.
First UFC rivalry: Ken Shamrock vs Royce GracieEdit
Shamrock's opponent in the semi finals of UFC 1 was MMA legend Royce Gracie. To start the fight, Royce immediately rushed Shamrock, who sprawled effectively and following a brief scramble, ended up in Gracie's open guard. Shamrock then grabbed Royce's ankle and sat back to attempt a heel hook. However, according to Shamrock, Royce had wrapped his gi around Shamrock's arm and when Shamrock sat back, it pulled Gracie on top of him. Gracie then secured a choke and advanced to the finals. Shamrock has later stated that Gracie used his gi as a tool for ligature strangulation to perform the submission, protesting the fact that he was not allowed to wear his wrestling shoes because the event organizers had stated that it could be used as a weapon, feeling that the rules for the tournament were created to favor Gracie. Regardless, this loss to Gracie affected Shamrock greatly and made him question whether or not he could become a champion in mixed martial arts. Shamrock then became determined to get a rematch with Gracie, which led to the first major rivalry in UFC history, Gracie vs. Shamrock. Shamrock, however, was unable to get his much desired rematch with Gracie at UFC 2. While training for UFC 2, he blocked a high kick while sparring with a teammate and broke his hand. He still wanted to compete, but when doctors told him that he might never fight again if he injured his hand any further, he reluctantly withdrew from the show.
Shamrock returned to the octagon at UFC 3 in an event that was marketed by the UFC as the ultimate rematch between two time champion Royce Gracie and #1 contender Ken Shamrock. Masakatsu Funaki, Minoru Suzuki and Frank Shamrock served as Ken's cornermen for the event. Shamrock's first fight was against top ranked judo practitioner Christophe Leninger. Leninger was the #2 ranked judo player in the United States with U.S. Olympic team experience and was also versed in Brazilian jiu jitsu. After a feeling out process to start the fight, Leninger engaged for a takedown, but Shamrock crossed faced him so hard into the mat that Leninger admitted to being knocked out for a second. After regaining full guard, Leninger attempted a triangle choke, but Shamrock defended it and took Leninger's back. Leninger eventually rolled back to full guard, but after Shamrock landed a series hard punches to his head, Leninger tapped out. Leninger suffered a mild concussion during this fight. Shamrock's next fight was in the semifinals against kickboxer Felix Mitchell. Shamrock took Mitchell down and forced him to tap out due to a rear naked choke.
With this win, Shamrock advanced to the finals of UFC 3. However, Shamrock only cared about avenging his loss to Gracie and when he learned Gracie had dropped out of the tournament due to the toll his first round match with Kimo Leopoldo had taken on him, Shamrock refused to come out for the finals. With Gracie out, Shamrock was now an overwhelming favorite to win the UFC 3 championship against finals opponent Harold Howard and Bob Shamrock, Ken's father, tried to explain to him how much money Shamrock would make by winning the championship. The title or the money did not matter to Shamrock. "When something is taken from you, you lose everything...everything I trained for, everything I had wanted...you get so hyped up for it and now it's gone!" Shamrock said. Controversially, alternate Steve Jennum took his place in the final and won the title, having not fought previously.
Shamrock was unable to compete in his much desired rematch with Gracie at UFC 4 either, as he was fighting in the King of Pancrase Tournament to determine the first champion of Pancrase. Shamrock faced and defeated Alex Cook and future UFC Heavyweight Champion Maurice Smith in the opening round and defeated some of the best Japanese grapplers in the world in the second round, including MMA legend Masakatsu Funaki and Manabu Yamada, to win the tournament. With this win, Shamrock became the first heavyweight MMA champion in Japan, being crowned the first King of Pancrase.
At UFC 5 in April 1995, Shamrock finally got his rematch with Gracie in a match that would determine the UFC Champion. The match, called "The Superfight", was the first singles match in UFC history and it was created to match the best fighters in the world against each other in a non-tournament format. The reputation of Royce Gracie at this time had reached mythical levels; Gracie's guard was the most feared weapon in martial arts and entering his guard was viewed as a death trap. Royce Gracie was considered to be the best fighter in the world and he would be taking on the best fighter in Japan, King of Pancrase Ken Shamrock, in a matchup for the ages. The match was the most anticipated match in UFC history to that date, which resulted in a massive 260,000 pay per view buys, a record that stood all the way until Randy Couture and Chuck Liddell's rematch in 2005 at UFC 52.
Hours before the event, the UFC suddenly instituted a 30 minute time limit, mainly due to pay per view time constraints. Both Gracie and Shamrock were upset at the sudden rule change. For Shamrock, it ruined his game plan, who had planned to wear Gracie down over the course of two hours. "I didn't want to just go out there and beat Royce," said Shamrock. "I wanted to shut down his whole bragging system, which was, 'We're in better condition, our skills are better and we can beat anybody, anywhere, anytime'. My whole strategy going in was to wear him out, make him dog-assed tired to where he could hardly stand. I was going to beat him...beat on his ribs, slowly break him down and then treat him like a baby." Shamrock did not change his strategy to better fit the sudden 30 minute time window, which resulted in a dull match that did not live up to its high expectations. Shamrock and Gracie fought for the entire allotted time of 30 minutes along with 5 minutes of overtime before the match was declared a draw due to the fight not having judges.
The fight ended in a draw, but most people watching the fight feel that, if the UFC at the time had ringside judges, Shamrock would have easily won the decision. The fans reacted with displeasure after the fight because a winner was not determined. Fans have been calling for a rematch ever since and much talk has surfaced over the years between both sides about who would have won if there were no time limits in place. The Gracies feel that Royce's jiu jitsu skills would have eventually won him the fight if it continued. Shamrock, however, feels that he was minutes away from finishing Gracie when time expired because he felt Gracie was badly hurt from the punch he landed to start the overtime period. In addition, the fact that Royce needed to be carried out of the octagon by his brothers after time expired showed Shamrock that Gracie did not have much left in the tank and confirmed to him that Gracie was beaten down. Gracie's larger than life reputation was dented for the first time in the UFC and with the melon sized welt closing Gracie's eye after the fight it appeared as though Gracie had lost. However, the swollen eye was a result of a standing punch due to a sudden change of the rules in which both of the fighters were restarted on the feet.
Despite many people viewing this as a dull match with little action, Shamrock did earn a lot of respect for this performance; back in those days, the Gracie guard was a mythical death trap and Shamrock became the first person to ever neutralize Gracie jiu jitsu in the United States. In addition, Shamrock also became the first person to visibly hurt Gracie in a fight. Popular opinion was that Shamrock was the unofficial winner of the Superfight. Play by play commentator Bruce Beck said at the end of the fight, "Gracie is a mess. Shamrock looks marvellous!" Gracie left the UFC after his fight with Shamrock and did not return until 11 years later at UFC 60. Shamrock would headline the subsequent 'superfight' bouts in Gracie's absence and became the main draw in the UFC.
Despite popular opinion that Shamrock unofficially won the UFC 5 Superfight with Gracie, the UFC was still without an official reigning Superfight champion. Shamrock was then matched up with UFC 5 tournament champion Dan Severn at UFC 6 to determine the reigning champion of the UFC. The 'superfight', a match presented as a fight between the "best of the best", was still the match that would determine the UFC champion and the tournament winners would be considered the #1 contender for the newly created UFC Superfight Championship, the first single world MMA championship outside of Japan. The Superfight title would later be renamed the UFC Heavyweight Championship when weight categories were introduced to the UFC. The Superfight title was created for the UFC 5 Superfight between Ken Shamrock and Royce Gracie, but since the match ended in a draw, the title remained vacant.
Before the match started, a storm was brewing between Severn and Shamrock, which led to the second major UFC rivalry: Ken Shamrock vs. Dan Severn. The feud began at the pre-fight press conference. After most of the attention from the media was given to Shamrock, Severn got up and walked out of the door without explanation. Shamrock took Severn's action as a sign of disrespect. Severn later said that he walked out because he felt that it would be unfair to Shamrock for him to be present in the room while Shamrock was discussing his fight strategy to the media. Shamrock became even more furious when he found a newsletter back at the hotel that explained to readers how Severn was going to destroy Shamrock. Fueled by anger, Shamrock could not wait to fight Severn in the octagon. Shamrock, wearing his anger on his sleeve, came out very aggressive in the fight, shooting for a takedown in the opening seconds and then clinching with Severn, a Greco-Roman wrestling specialist. Shamrock proceeded to win the fight with Severn quickly and easily, choking out Severn in 2:14 to win the UFC Superfight Championship. Shamrock displayed excellent wrestling skills in this fight, having out-wrestled Severn, a four time All-American Divison 1 wrestler at Arizona State University. With this win, Shamrock became the reigning UFC Champion and became the man who the tournament winners would challenge for the title. As the UFC Superfight Champion, Ken Shamrock was considered by many to be the best no holds barred/mixed martial arts fighter in the world.
At UFC 7, Shamrock successfully defended the UFC Superfight title against UFC 6 Tournament Champion "The Russian Bear" Oleg Taktarov, in what would have been a very lopsided decision victory for Shamrock if there had been judges. Shamrock went from coaching and cornering Oleg in his tournament finals fight at UFC 6 to having to fight him at the next UFC, a situation that made Shamrock uneasy. Shamrock stated in his autobiography that he was uncomfortable fighting Taktarov, as Oleg trained with the Lion's Den and he did not wish to injure his friend and teammate. He claimed to be trying to open a cut on Taktarov's face to get the referee to stop the fight because he knew that Oleg would never tap out. In Beyond the Lion's Den, Shamrock states; "In addition to being his friend, I was also trying to get him into Pancrase and if I broke his leg it would be a while before he could recover and he needed the money. I figured my best chance of winning without seriously hurting him was to beat on him with punches... If I could open a cut and get him to start pouring blood, I could get a referee stoppage. It might not have been the best plan going into a fight, but considering the options it seemed like the best option available. And it turned out fine. I battered him around for the duration of the match, the bout was declared a draw and when Oleg recovered he went on to fight in Pancrase." Longtime UFC cutman Leon Tabbs recalled Oleg's condition after the fight: "I go in there to stop the bleeding and he's halfway unconscious. He finally comes out of it and looks at me and says, 'Leon, why did you stop the fight?'"
Shamrock then defended his belt for the third time against Kimo Leopoldo at UFC 8, in front of 13,000+ energetic fans in Puerto Rico. Kimo was best known at this time as the man who ended Royce Gracie's consecutive UFC tournament wins dating back to their fight at UFC 3. Kimo charged at Shamrock to start the fight and threw a kick, but Shamrock countered the kick by popping Kimo in the jaw with an overhand right and simultaneously caught Kimo's extended leg for a single leg takedown. Shamrock eventually passed his guard into full mount. Shamrock chose not to strike Kimo and instead went for a choke and allowed Kimo to reverse the position into Shamrock's half guard. Kimo landed a heavy punch to swell Shamrock's eye, but Shamrock regained full guard and spun for a kneebar from his back. Shamrock secured the kneebar, forcing Kimo to pound the mat in submission.
The Detroit DanceEdit
After defending his UFC title at UFC 8, Shamrock was scheduled to face number one contender and rival Dan Severn at UFC 9 in a rematch of their fight at UFC 6, which Shamrock won by guillotine choke in 2:14. Severn was coming off winning the Ultimate Ultimate 1995 tournament and by all accounts Severn and Shamrock did not like each other. Their rematch at UFC 9 was highly anticipated and was marketed as the "Clash of the Titans 2" and took place in the Cobo Arena in Detroit, Michigan, in Severn's home state. Shamrock had a lot on the line at UFC 9; Sports Illustrated was there to do a story on him and if he beat Severn again, Shamrock was going to be on the cover of the biggest sports magazine in America, Sports Illustrated. In addition, he would also be featured in a story on the mainstream network CNN sports. Shamrock would be the first mixed martial artist ever to be featured on the cover of a major sports magazine, let alone the biggest one in America. However, despite high expectations, the fight would go down as one of the worst in MMA history for a variety of reasons. UFC owner Robert Meyrowitz, referee John McCarthy and a team of lawyers were in court until 4:30 p.m. on the day of the fight battling with the District Attorney of Michigan, who was trying to prevent the UFC from holding the event in Michigan. An ultimatum was issued: the fight could go on as long as there were no closed fisted strikes to the head and no headbutts. The UFC, desperate to put the show on, agreed to the terms. Fighters were warned hours before the show that they would be arrested if they punched to the head with a closed fist (although many fights that night included closed fisted punches, no fighters were arrested).
When Shamrock learned of the sudden rule change, he made up his mind that he was not going to fight. While training for UFC 9, Shamrock suffered a torn lateral meniscus, a broken nose and two bruised ribs and combined with the rule that he could not punch, he did not think he could win a fight because all of his weapons were taken away from him. Shamrock was also fearful that he would be arrested; the troubled boys from his father's foster home would be watching him and he was afraid of setting a bad example. If Shamrock withdrew, the main event would have been cancelled and the UFC could have suffered substantial monetary damage. After UFC owner Bob Meyrowitz and other UFC officials pleaded with Shamrock to go on with the show, Shamrock, despite the injuries and new rules, reluctantly gave in to the pressure for the sake of the UFC.
In a fight that would be called "The Detroit Dance", both Severn and Shamrock circled each other with little to no contact for almost thirty minutes. "I took the center of the ring understanding that I was going to be fighting for my life and Dan never came at me," Shamrock said. Severn later said that his strategy was to purposely not engage with Shamrock and wait for the fans to boo, hoping that the booing would affect Shamrock psychologically and force him to make a mistake that Severn could capitalize on. Finally, after over 15 minutes of stalling, Severn shot for a takedown, but was unsuccessful and following a brief scramble, Shamrock ended up on top of Severn in full mount. Shamrock held the mount for close to 5 minutes, throwing open fisted palm strikes to Severn's head and an occasional closed fisted punch to the body. Shamrock felt as though he would have damaged Severn badly and perhaps finished him, from this position of full mount if he was allowed to punch Severn in the face with a closed fist. Severn eventually gave his back in an attempt to get out and the risk paid off as he reversed Shamrock into his full guard. Severn landed a headbutt to open a cut above Shamrock's eye and followed with elbow strikes and punches from Shamrock's guard. Shamrock eventually got back to his feet and after 6 more minutes stalling, the fight went to a judges decision. The judges gave a split decision win to Dan Severn, which upset Shamrock because he felt as though Severn had broken the rules by utilizing closed fisted punches to the head and headbutts. Chants of "boring!" and "Let's go Red Wings!" were echoed throughout the arena during the fight. Shamrock later stated that going through with this fight was the biggest regret of his fighting career. This fight would mark the last time Masakatsu Funaki would serve as Ken Shamrock's trainer and cornerman.
After taking time off away from the octagon, including being a guest on Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Shamrock entered the UFC's Ultimate Ultimate 96. Frank Shamrock served as Ken's head cornerman for the event. Before the event, Shamrock promised to be aggressive in this fight to make up for the dance with Severn. Shamrock honored his word, demolishing Brian Johnston in the quarterfinals. Shamrock, however, broke the same hand during this fight that kept him out of UFC 2 and had to withdraw from the tournament.
Leaving MMA for the WWFEdit
After UFC 9, Senator John McCain was successful in pulling UFC pay-per-view broadcasts from numerous cable systems, including TCI cable, which greatly hurt pay per view revenue. Combined with money drying out and being burnt out from fighting, Shamrock left MMA for professional wrestling, signing with the World Wrestling Federation. Shamrock left MMA for pro wrestling while he was seemingly at the top of his game; he was in his prime and he was at this time considered by many to be the best fighter in the world. Shamrock was never the same fighter after the transition to pro wrestling, largely due to the amount of injuries he suffered while in the WWF.
Despite not competing in the UFC as a fighter while with the WWF, Shamrock continued to coach his Lion's Den fighters in the UFC and even coached Mark Coleman at UFC 18. Shamrock left NHB with a professional record of 23 wins, 5 losses and 2 draws.
Return to MMA- Pride Fighting Championships (2000–2002)Edit
In 2000, Shamrock made a comeback to the mixed martial arts scene following a 4 year hiatus from the WWF. He signed with Pride Fighting Championships and defeated Alexander Otsuka by TKO due to punches at the Pride Grand Prix 2000 Finals in the superfight, his first fight back from the WWF. Shamrock was very impressive in this fight as he was able to knock out Otsuka, something that powerful striker and PRIDE superstar Igor Vovchanchyn could not do to Otsuka in their fight a few months earlier. This was the first ever Pride event to be broadcasted live in America and Pride strategically used Shamrock's drawing power in America by making his Superfight with Otsuka the co-headliner of the event.
Shamrock then fought "Ironhead" Kazuyuki Fujita at Pride 10, who was coming off a huge upset victory over Mark Kerr. Fujita was a national champion in Greco Roman wrestling in Japan and was famous for his ability to take inhumane amounts of damage to his head without being knocked out, hence his nickname "Ironhead". He was also well known for his ability to withstand a guillotine choke due to his strong neck. During the time before the fight, Shamrock was going through a divorce and had to take care of his young kids during the day, which severely cut into his training time for the fight. Despite this, Shamrock dominated Fujita throughout the entire fight, putting on a sprawl and brawl clinic nearly knocking Fujita out and also came very close to submitting Fujita via guillotine choke. However, he eventually had his corner throw in the towel because he felt like he was having a heart attack, ending an exciting fight in anticlimactic fashion. He was evaluated after the fight and it was determined that he was suffering from heart palpitations. Shamrock talked about what happened to him in an interview: "I'm not sure, even to this day, I'm not sure. Everything went white and I couldn't see. My heart felt like it was pounding through my chest. I'm not quite sure what happened. I couldn't control my vision, my balance, I don't know what was wrong with me. I was going through a lot just then, I was going through a divorce and my 4 kids were dropped off on me in a two bedroom apartment, so I didn't get to train properly for the fight. There was a lot going on in my life at the time and I think that there was a whole bunch of stress built up on me and it came out when I didn't want it to."
In December 2000, PRIDE tried to set up a dream fight between Ken Shamrock and PRIDE Grand Prix Champion and former UFC Heavyweight Champion Mark Coleman. The fight was offered to Shamrock and he accepted it. The dream match up with Shamrock greatly excited Coleman, but after training for a few days, Coleman decided that he was not physically ready to fight someone of Shamrock's caliber. Coleman talked about his feelings on the fight in an interview: "For about a four day stand I contemplated taking the fight because it's something that's very hard to turn down. It's a dream match up and a question I've been asked over and over again, whether I would fight Ken Shamrock. So I wanted to take the fight very badly, I turned up my training for about 4 days, then on Friday night I came to the conclusion that I'm just not physically ready to fight Ken Shamrock...Certainly if your going to fight someone with Ken Shamrock's skills then you want to be as close to 100 percent as you can."
Shamrock was then scheduled to fight feared PRIDE superstar Igor Vovchanchyn at Pride 13, but suffered a neck injury during training two weeks before the fight. Tra Telligman, a Lion's Den fighter, replaced Shamrock on two weeks notice and defeated Vovchanchyn in an upset victory.
Shamrock engaged in a feud with Don Frye during his career in the Pride Fighting Championships. The feud ended in a match during Pride 19 – Bad Blood. In what was the last great match of Shamrock's career, he lost a razor thin split decision even though he got several leglocks on Frye, who refused to tap and had his knees and ankles ruined in the process. Frye was never the same fighter. The background of the feud was Don Frye's trash talking. In 1999, Alicia Webb (also known as Ryan Shamrock) dated Ken Shamrock until early 2003. Don Frye made comments on this case which Ken Shamrock cheated on and divorced his wife to date a young girl (Alicia Webb was 19 and Ken Shamrock was 35 when they started dating). Frye also said that Ken's (at the time) estranged father Bob and brother Frank would be in Frye's corner for the fight. Ken Shamrock was enraged by Frye's trash talk, causing a feud between Ken Shamrock and Don Frye. Since then, Frye has stated that he only resorted to personal trash talk to make Ken want to fight him. Frye said: "I saw Ken Shamrock whoop him (Dan Severn) at UFC 6 and I thought, "That's a guy I gotta fight. Anybody who can whoop Dan Severn like that has gotta be a man and I want to test my size against his size. I had the chance to talk trash and they gave me the fight; I crossed the line. I wasn't professional about it, but Ken was and after the fight, we shook hands and went our separate ways." Frye also commented on how Shamrock injured his ankles: "I talked a bunch of trash, so I had to back it up. I couldn't walk away after talking all that garbage. You're damn right it hurt. He messed up both my ankles real bad. That caused me to start taking the pain pills and I got a little dependent on the pain meds for a couple of years." Frye also said: "If I'd known it was going to hurt this bad, I'd have kept my mouth shut!" The two fighters have been friends since that match.
Many feel that the war with Frye was the last great bout of Shamrock's career and his final showing as a top level MMA competitor. Both Frye and Shamrock would go on to great decline after this point.
Ultimate Fighting Championship (Second spell – 2002–2006)Edit
Shamrock's Lion's Den has engaged in a feud with former UFC Light Heavyweight champion, Tito Ortiz. The feud began to build when Ortiz, with his fingers, acted like he was shooting at the Lion's Den corner and coach Ken Shamrock after his win over Jerry Bohlander at UFC 18 and additionally put on a disrespectful shirt in the octagon after the fight with Bohlander. The feud exploded after his second fight with Guy Mezger at UFC 19 when Ortiz put on a shirt that said "Gay Mezger is my Bitch" and gave the middle finger to the Lion's Den corner. Ken Shamrock leaped onto the top of the cage and screamed at Ortiz, angrily waving his finger in Ortiz's face and ordering Ortiz to put a cease to the disrespectful acts. Ortiz's antics enraged the Lion's Den, especially Guy Mezger and leader Ken Shamrock and eventually built into one of the highest-selling mixed martial arts Pay Per View events of all time in the United States. At UFC 40, three and a half years after the confrontation at UFC 19, Shamrock fought Ortiz in a title match for the UFC Light Heavyweight Championship. Although it was understood that Shamrock was past his prime, many people gave Shamrock a good chance to win based on his punching power and submission skills. Shamrock showcased his power early in round 1, dropping Ortiz to one knee with a punch to the jaw. However, Ortiz recovered and went on to defeat Shamrock in a one sided fight when Shamrock's corner threw in the towel after the third round ended. Shamrock fought Ortiz with a torn ACL, which is a severe knee injury. Bruce Buffer has said many times that this fight was one of the greatest fights he has ever seen and that the energy from the crowd that night was one of the greatest feelings he has ever experienced.
On November 21, 2003, at UFC 45, Royce Gracie and Ken Shamrock became the first inductees to the UFC Hall of Fame. The event celebrated the 10th anniversary of the UFC. UFC President Dana White said; "We feel that no two individuals are more deserving than Royce and Ken to be the charter members. Their contributions to our sport, both inside and outside the Octagon, may never be equaled.” Shamrock spoke to the fans with a heartfelt speech: “Until now, I felt I had a satisfying career in the UFC. But, being one of the first to be inducted in the Hall of Fame brings it altogether. I will never forget you and now I will not be forgotten. God bless.” A poll was also conducted on the UFC's website among UFC fans to determine the most popular UFC fighters and Shamrock was voted the second most popular fighter in the UFC by the fans.
After a two year layoff, a 40 year old Shamrock returned to fight 244 lb. Kimo Leopoldo at UFC 48 in a rematch of the UFC 8 Superfight Championship match. Kimo was coming off an impressive win over Shamrock's long time rival, Tank Abbott. Shamrock won the bout in the first round by KO via knee to the head. Shamrock's knee strike to Kimo's chin was so hard that he opened up a cut on his knee after landing the shot. Shamrock's mega drawing power was evident when the pay per view numbers came out for the event; UFC 48 amazingly drew more pay per view buys than the ultra hyped mega fight between mixed martial arts stars Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz one event earlier at UFC 47.
April 9, 2005, was a turning point in Shamrock's career and future in mixed martial arts. Shamrock faced rising star and future UFC Middleweight Champion Rich Franklin in the main event in a light heavyweight bout on the popular reality series The Ultimate Fighter finale. The event was a monumental moment in UFC history because it was the first ever UFC appearance on basic cable TV. Shamrock slapped on a heel hook early in the fight that put Franklin on crutches for a week, but Franklin escaped and defeated Shamrock by a TKO in the first round after taking advantage of a Shamrock slip while executing a high kick. At 41 years old, this was the first time Shamrock had ever been knocked out in a mixed martial arts fight in his career.
On October 24, 2005, Shamrock lost to fellow mixed martial arts legend Kazushi "The Gracie Hunter" Sakuraba in Pride: Fully Loaded, by TKO. The stoppage was very controversial because Shamrock immediately got up and protested to the referee, showing no signs of damage. There was also a feeling that PRIDE may have had a quick trigger on Shamrock because they were heavily biased in favor of the Japanese legend Sakuraba. However, his brother Frank Shamrock commented on the stoppage in an interview with the site Sherdog.com: "...if you're sleeping with your head through the second rope, you're in a bad way. He got clocked. He went down. According to the rules he was no longer defending himself and that's the end of the fight."
The Ultimate Fighter: Season 3Edit
The season unexpectedly turned out to be very problematic between Shamrock and his fighters. This was unexpected because Shamrock had a reputation for being an outstanding coach; he built one of the most successful MMA fight teams of all time, the legendary Lion's Den and molded his Lion's Den fighters into UFC Champions. Shamrock was portrayed very badly on the show, feuding with his fighters and often appearing uninterested. Shamrock admitted to doing a poor job with his fighters: "I failed them miserably, completely. So I have to figure out a way to get this...back in the driver's seat", Shamrock said during the show. The problems between Shamrock and his fighters on the show caused many newer fans to question Shamrock's coaching style. Shamrock responded to his critics in an interview: "I trained three fighters that were the first three (UFC) Middleweight Champions: Jerry Bohlander, Guy Mezger and Frank Shamrock. And I’ve trained dozens of guys to be champs in other organizations. In Pancrase, I had eight fighters in the top ten at one point. I was the champion and (Masakatsu) Funaki was the number one contender. The rest were all Lion's Den fighters. My reputation doesn’t have to be spoken for or defended. The UFC and Spike TV did what they thought they needed to do for ratings, but in the end, my fans, my family and my God know exactly who I am." Shamrock also commented about his portrayal on "TUF": "People always come up to me now and say, ‘They portrayed you in such a bad light on that show.’ That’s always how they phrase it. They portrayed you that way. I guess that means people really know what I’m like. They wouldn’t say that if they thought that was really me. It makes me feel better to know that people feel that way." Roy Nelson also defended Shamrock as a coach. Roy said, "He's not how they depict him on The Ultimate Fighter. He's a good guy and he's been in the business for a long time. He knows what works and what doesn't."
In a separate interview with UGO.com, Shamrock shed light upon the reason for the turmoil between himself and his fighters on "TUF": "Anytime you're put into a situation where the fighter or the trainer have to work with each other whether they mesh or not, it always becomes a problem. Then, when there are one or two guys you don't really mesh with, then it trickles down to the rest of the team. Unfortunately for me, not that the fighters were bad or anything, I just got a bunch of guys on the team that I didn't see eye to eye with. Me being a coach and running my own team for a long time, being able to call all the shots, it didn't work very well for me to have guys telling me what they wanted to do...It's a tough thing for a coach, especially for me. For so long I've been in control things and bring these guys up and nurture them and mold them into great fighters. I was very successful at that early on. But when I was thrown into that situation, I knew the score. I knew there could be problems and there were. I had a hard time with that. Other guys, like Tito (Ortiz) and Randy (Couture) really had some success with it. But for me it was difficult."
On July 8, 2006, at UFC 61, the highly anticipated rematch between Shamrock and a heavily favored Tito Ortiz took place. The pay per view numbers set North American MMA records with 775,000 buys on pay-per-view and a $3.4 million gate. Not everyone, however, was thrilled with the fight. Former UFC owner Bob Meyrowitz said, "I didn't like seeing Ken Shamrock fight Tito Ortiz the second time. It is a very difficult thing for a great athlete to, perhaps, comprehend that their time is past. And it's hardest of all for a fighter. Boxing is full of stories where somebody just fights when they really shouldn't any longer."
Shamrock lost the rematch with Ortiz in 1:18 of the first round by a technical knockout in a fight that ended in chaotic controversy. Shamrock came out firing, landing a combination of punches to back Ortiz into the cage, but Ortiz successfully secured a double leg takedown on Shamrock, lifting him up and slamming him to the mat. Although Shamrock was now on his back in a disadvantageous position, he did have Ortiz in his full guard. Ortiz, while in Shamrock's full guard, was able to land several elbows to Shamrock's head which went undefended. Referee Herb Dean deemed that Shamrock was no longer able to intelligently defend himself and stopped the fight. Watching the slow-mo, Shamrock did go limp from one elbow but revived for the next. Shamrock and the crowd were furious at the early stoppage and Dana White immediately put together a rematch on television.
On October 10, 2006, at Ortiz vs Shamrock 3 - The Final Chapter, Shamrock was dominated again by Ortiz by KO after referee John McCarthy stopped the fight following multiple undefended fist strikes. The fight took place live on Spike TV. The two-hour broadcast drew a 3.1 overall rating, with the main event of Tito Ortiz vs. Ken Shamrock drawing a 4.3 rating. Quoting MMA Weekly's Ivan Trembow, "That breaks down to an amazing 5.7 million viewers for the Ortiz vs. Shamrock fight. This shatters the UFC's previous record for the number of people watching a UFC fight at any given time." The overall ratings record would not be matched until UFC 75 on September 8, 2007. Immediately after the fight, Ortiz initially celebrated his victory with a mocking "grave digger" routine and an offensive t-shirt that said, "Punishing Him Into Retirement" after giving him the finger. However, Shamrock approached Ortiz and, after the two talked for several seconds, Shamrock said they could put all of their animosity aside as it was always "just business", shaking hands and burying the hatchet. Ortiz then declared that facing Shamrock had made him a better fighter and thanked Ken for "passing the torch". Ortiz added in his post-fight interview that he has always looked up to Shamrock. Shamrock gave a gracious speech after the fight but left it ambiguous whether he would retire from the sport. In an interview with Sherdog.com, he stated he was not leaning one way or another whether he will not fight again, but he did not want to lead the fans on.
Ken was released from his UFC contract as of June 2007.
Post-UFC Career (2007–present)Edit
In early 2007, Ken Shamrock became the coach of the Nevada Lions for the IFL. Roy Nelson, one of Shamrock's fighters, was the reigning IFL Heavyweight Champion when the league was bought out and disbanded.
On March 8 at the Cage Rage 25, Shamrock fought Robert Berry, but was knocked out in the first round. It was announced on August 25 that Shamrock's next opponent would be Kimbo Slice at Elite XC Saturday Night Fight Special on October 4, 2008. However, Shamrock would never get the chance as he was injured shortly before the two men were to start the bout. On the day of the fight, Shamrock was warming up and received a head butt which opened a cut. He needed 6 stitches and was not able to compete against Slice. The doctor who examined Ken said he would not be able to compete for at least 45 days because of the injury.
Ken Shamrock Productions co-promoted an event with War Gods on February 13, 2009, in which Ken fought in the main event against 6'6, 380 lb. Ross Clifton. Shamrock knocked Clifton down with a right hand and finished him via arm bar from side control in the first round. The fight was streamed live on Sherdog.com and had over 200,000 live views. Shamrock was then scheduled to fight fellow WWE alum Bobby Lashley, but tested positive for steroids after the Clifton fight and received a one year suspension. Shamrock's manager and attorney Rod Donovan said the fighter has adamantly denied the allegations.
Shamrock was expected to face Seth Petruzelli on March 6, 2010 at an event called International Unlimited Fighting: The Return of Buluc but the event was pushed to a further unknown date because of location problems.
Professional wrestling careerEdit
In 1988, Shamrock trained as a professional wrestler under Bob Sawyer, Buzz Sawyer and Nelson Royal. He debuted in 1990 in the Charlotte, North Carolina-based South Atlantic Pro Wrestling promotion under the ring name Wayne Shamrock. He later changed his ring name to just Shamrock and turned heel, adopting the nickname "Mr. Wrestling". In 1990, Shamrock travelled to Japan, where he competed in the Universal Wrestling Federation and its successor promotion, Pro Wrestling Fujiwara Gumi.
His first taste of mixed martial arts came following the exodus of his mentors Minoru Suzuki and Masakatsu Funaki from Fujiwara's promotion to found one of the formative Japanese mixed martial arts associations, Pancrase. Later, he returned to America to compete in the Ultimate Fighting Championshipor UFC.
Shamrock would split time between the two organizations until 1996, whereupon he returned to professional wrestling, signing a contract with the World Wrestling Federation.
World Wrestling Federation (1997–1999)Edit
Shamrock made his WWF debut on the February 24, 1997 episode of Monday Night Raw. On March 23, 1997, Shamrock, identified as Ken Shamrock and billed as "The World's Most Dangerous Man"—a name given to him by ABC News, refereed a submission match between Bret Hart and Steve Austin at WrestleMania 13.
Shamrock returned to the ring following WrestleMania, squashing Vernon White (one of his Lion's Den students) in his debut WWF match. He went on to feud with Vader, Bret Hart and The Hart Foundation throughout 1997, culminating in a bout between Shamrock and The British Bulldog at SummerSlam 1997 which Shamrock lost after refusing to relinquish a chokehold, following Shamrock going on a rampage after being slapped across the face by The British Bulldog with a handful of dog-food. Shamrock was considered a candidate to win the WWF Championship from the departing Bret Hart, before the Montreal Screwjob occurred. Shamrock went on to challenge Shawn Michaels for the WWF Championship at In Your House in December, defeating Michaels by disqualification after Triple H and Chyna interfered in the match.
Throughout early 1998, Shamrock feuded with WWF Intercontinental Champion Rocky Maivia. He lost to Maivia via disqualification at the 1998 Royal Rumble and a victory over Maivia at WrestleMania XIV was reversed after Shamrock continued to apply his ankle lock after Maivia had submitted. In June 1998, Shamrock won the 1998 King of the Ring tournament, defeating Jeff Jarrett in the semi-finals and Maivia in the finals. Following the King of the Ring, Shamrock feuded with Owen Hart, with Hart defeating Shamrock in a "Hart Family Dungeon match" at Fully Loaded and Shamrock defeating Hart in a "Lion's Den match" at SummerSlam. In September, he formed a short-lived stable with Mankind and The Rock.
Shamrock turned heel in October 1998 and won the vacant Intercontinental Championship on October 12, defeating X-Pac in the finals of an eight man tournament. In November, Shamrock consolidated his heel status by joining Mr. McMahon's Corporation. On December 14, Shamrock and fellow Corporation member Big Boss Man defeated the New Age Outlaws for the WWF Tag Team Championship, making Shamrock a dual champion. The duo held the titles until January 25, 1999, when they lost to Jeff Jarrett and Owen Hart.
In January 1999, Shamrock began feuding with Billy Gunn, Goldust and Val Venis, all of whom had made overtures to his sister, Ryan. He lost the Intercontinental Championship to Venis on February 14 when Gunn, the guest referee, delivered a fast count. Shamrock took part in a four way bout for the Intercontinental Championship at WrestleMania XV. The reigning champion Road Dogg, was able to retain his title by pinning Goldust after Shamrock and Venis were counted out while brawling outside the ring.
In mid-1999, the Corporation began feuding with The Undertaker and his Ministry of Darkness, with The Undertaker's minions repeatedly ambushing Shamrock and kidnapping Ryan, sacrificing her on the Undertaker's symbol. After breaking away from the Corporation, thus turning face once more, Shamrock went on to feud with The Undertaker at Backlash and lost. In May, Shamrock, The Big Show, Mankind and Test formed The Union, a stable of wrestlers in opposition to the Corporate Ministry. The Union dissolved soon after defeating the Corporate Ministry at Over the Edge in May.
Shamrock briefly feuded with Jeff Jarrett before beginning a rivalry with martial artist Steve Blackman that saw he and Blackman fight one another in a series of unorthodox matches. The feud ended at SummerSlam 1999, where Shamrock defeated Blackman in a "Lion's Den weapons match". He went on to feud with the newly debuted Chris Jericho until departing the WWF in late 1999 in order to resume his mixed martial arts career. His departure was attributed to an injury inflicted by Jericho's bodyguard, Mr. Hughes.
Ring of Honor (2002)Edit
Total Nonstop Action Wrestling (2002, 2004)Edit
In May 2002, he signed a one year contract with the newly formed Total Nonstop Action Wrestling promotion. On the inaugural TNA pay-per-view on June 19, Shamrock won the vacant NWA World Heavyweight Championship in a Gauntlet for the Gold match. After feuding with Malice for several weeks, Shamrock left TNA shortly after losing the title to Ron Killings on August 7. He briefly returned to TNA in June 2004 as an ally of Jeff Jarrett before leaving the company and the sport once more.
He legally changed his name to Ken Shamrock in tribute to Bob Shamrock, owner of the Shamrock Ranch, a facility for troubled boys in Susanville, California, who was instrumental in turning Shamrock's life around as a teenager. Along with his brother Frank Shamrock, he is adopted. According to Shamrock, he lived in cars and was abandoned as a child. This was also integrated into the personal history of his WWF persona. He is the head trainer of the Lion's Den, a school of shoot-fighting, or what is more commonly referred to as submission fighting. He attended junior college at Shasta College in Redding, California and has been considered a possible choice for induction into the Shasta County Sports Hall Of Fame.
Ken and Frank have an estranged relationship; Ken has claimed that Frank mistreated their foster father Bob, while Frank claims that the real reason for the fallout with Ken is due to his feeling that Ken was trying to keep Frank's career down. Frank asserts that he and Ken have never been close and that his attempts to mend their relationship were rejected by Ken.
Ken has been married twice. His first marriage, to a woman named Tina Ramirez, ended in divorce in early 2002. Together they have 4 children: Ryan (born November 24, 1988), Connor Kenneth (born September 26, 1991), Shawn and one daughter. In 2005, Ken remarried a woman named Tonya whom he had known since childhood. He is now stepfather to her 3 children. In total, Ken has seven children and two grandchildren, including a granddaughter named Malen.
He appeared in the films Champions, Virtuosity, Scarecrow Gone Wild and the much anticipated high school wrestling movie Beyond the Mat. He also appeared in the That '70s Show episode "That Wrestling Show" as Wrestler #1.
On January 14, 2010, Frank and Ken Shamrock's adoptive father, Bob Shamrock, died due to health complications from diabetes.
In the UFC, Shamrock frequently used the song "What You Got" by Reveille as he made his entrance towards the Octagon. His professional wrestling theme song which originated in the WWF was titled "Dangerous", composed by long time WWF theme music creator Jim Johnston and appeared on WWF The Music, Vol. 2 and WWF The Music, Vol. 3.
- Finishing moves
- Pro Wrestling Illustrated
- Most Improved Wrestler of the Year (1997)
- PWI ranked him #226 of the 500 best singles wrestlers of the PWI Years in 2003
- South Atlantic Pro Wrestling
- SAPW Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Total Nonstop Action Wrestling
- World Wrestling Federation
Mixed martial artsEdit
- Ultimate Fighting Championship
- Pancrase Hybrid Wrestling
- King of Pancrase (1994)
- King of Pancrase 24-man Tournament winner
- World Mixed Martial Arts Association
- WMMAA Heavyweight Championship (1 time)
- Pride Fighting Championships
- Pride Grand Prix 2000 Finals Superfight
- Wrestling Observer Newsletter awards
Mixed martial arts record Edit
|Professional record breakdown|
|44||27 wins||13 losses|
|TBD||Seth Petruzelli||International Unlimited Fighting: The Return of Buluc||Cancún, Mexico|
|2009-02-13||Win||27–13–2||Ross Clifton||WarGods: Valentine's Eve Massacre||Submission (Armbar)||Round 1, 1:00||Fresno, California, US||Tested positive for banned substances after the fight|
|2008-03-08||Loss||26–13–2||Robert Berry||Cage Rage 25: Bring It On||KO (Punches)||Round 1, 3:26||London, England|
|2006-10-10||Loss||26–12–2||Tito Ortiz||UFC – Ortiz vs. Shamrock 3: The Final Chapter||TKO (Punches)||Round 1, 2:23||Hollywood, Florida, US|
|2006-07-08||Loss||26–11–2||Tito Ortiz||UFC 61: Bitter Rivals||TKO (Elbows)||Round 1, 1:18||Las Vegas, Nevada, US|
|2005-10-23||Loss||26–10–2||Kazushi Sakuraba||Pride 30||TKO (Punch)||Round 1, 2:27||Saitama, Japan|
|2005-04-09||Loss||26–9–2||Rich Franklin||The Ultimate Fighter 1 Finale||TKO (Punches)||Round 1, 2:42||Las Vegas, Nevada, US|
|2004-06-19||Win||26–8–2||Kimo Leopoldo||UFC 48: Payback||TKO (Knee and Punches)||Round 1, 1:26||Las Vegas, Nevada, US|
|2002-11-22||Loss||25–8–2||Tito Ortiz||UFC 40: Vendetta||TKO (Corner Stoppage)||Round 3, 5:00||Las Vegas, Nevada, US||For UFC Light Heavyweight title|
|2002-02-24||Loss||25–7–2||Don Frye||Pride 19||Decision (Split)||Round 3, 5:00||Saitama, Japan|
|2001-08-10||Win||25–6–2||Sam Adkins||WMMAA 1 – Megafights||Submission (Kimura)||Round 1, 1:26||Atlantic City, New Jersey, US||Won WMMAA Heavyweight title|
|2000-08-27||Loss||24–6–2||Kazuyuki Fujita||Pride 10||TKO (Corner Stoppage – Exhaustion)||Round 1, 6:46||Saitama, Japan|
|2000-05-01||Win||24–5–2||Alexander Otsuka||Pride Grand Prix 2000 Finals||TKO (Strikes)||Round 1, 9:43||Tokyo, Japan||Pride Grand Prix 2000 Finals Superfight|
|1996-12-07||Win||23–5–2||Brian Johnston||UFC The Ultimate Ultimate 2||Submission (Forearm Choke)||Round 1, 5:48||Birmingham, Alabama, US|
|1996-05-17||Loss||22–5–2||Dan Severn||UFC 9: Motor City Madness||Decision (Split)||Round 1, 30:00||Detroit, Michigan, US||Lost UFC Superfight Championship|
|1996-02-16||Win||22–4–2||Kimo Leopoldo||UFC 8: David vs. Goliath||Submission (Kneebar)||Round 1, 4:24||San Juan, Puerto Rico||Defends UFC Superfight Championship|
|1996-01-28||Win||21–4–2||Yoshiki Takahashi||Pancrase-Truth 1||Decision (Lost Points)||Round 1, 20:00||Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan|
|1995-12-14||Win||20–4–2||Katsuomi Inagaki||Pancrase-Eyes Of Beast 7||Submission (Arm Triangle Choke)||Round 1, 3:19||Sapporo, Hokkaido, Japan|
|1995-09-08||Draw||19–4–2||Oleg Taktarov||UFC 7: The Brawl in Buffalo||Draw||Round 1, 33:00||Buffalo, New York, US||Defends UFC Superfight Championship. Match was declared a draw because there were no judges.|
|1995-07-22||Win||19–4–1||Larry Papadopoulos||Pancrase-1995 Neo-Blood Tournament, Round 1||Submission (Achilles Lock)||Round 1, 2:18||Tokyo, Japan|
|1995-07-14||Win||18–4–1||Dan Severn||UFC 6: Clash of the Titans||Submission (Guillotine choke)||Round 1, 2:14||Casper, Wyoming, US||Won UFC Superfight Championship|
|1995-05-13||Loss||17–4–1||Minoru Suzuki||Pancrase-Eyes Of Beast 4||Submission (Kneebar)||Round 1, 2:14||Urayasu, Chiba, Japan||Lost King of Pancrase title. Match rumored to be a work|
|1995-04-07||Draw||17–3–1||Royce Gracie||UFC 5: The Return of the Beast||Draw||Round 1, 36:00||Charlotte, North Carolina, US||For UFC Superfight title. Match was declared a draw because there were no judges.|
|1995-03-10||Win||17–3||Bas Rutten||Pancrase-Eyes Of Beast 2||Submission (Kneebar)||Round 1, 1:01||Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan||Defends King of Pancrase title|
|1995-01-26||Win||16–3||Leon Dijk||Pancrase-Eyes Of Beast 1||Submission (Heel Hook)||Round 1, 4:45||Nagoya, Aichi, Japan|
|1994-12-17||Win||15–3||Manabu Yamada||Pancrase-King Of Pancrase Tournament, Round 2||Decision (Unanimous)||Round 1, 30:00||Tokyo, Japan||Won King of Pancrase Tournament: Became first Pancrase Champion|
|1994-12-17||Win||14–3||Masakatsu Funaki||Pancrase-King Of Pancrase Tournament, Round 2||Submission (Arm Triangle Choke)||Round 1, 5:50||Tokyo, Japan|
|1994-12-16||Win||13–3||Maurice Smith||Pancrase-King of Pancrase Tournament, Round 1||Submission (Arm Triangle Choke)||Round 1, 4:23||Tokyo, Japan|
|1994-12-16||Win||12–3||Alex Cook||Pancrase-King of Pancrase Tournament, Round 1||Submission (Heel Hook)||Round 1, 1:31||Tokyo, Japan|
|1994-10-15||Win||11–3||Takaku Fuke||Pancrase-Road To The Championship 5||Submission (Rear naked choke)||Round 1, 3:13||Tokyo, Japan|
|1994-09-09||Win||10–3||Felix Mitchell||UFC 3: The American Dream||Submission (Rear naked choke)||Round 1, 4:34||Charlotte, North Carolina, US|
|1994-09-09||Win||9–3||Christophe Leninger||UFC 3: The American Dream||Submission (Strikes)||Round 1, 4:49||Charlotte, North Carolina, US|
|1994-09-01||Loss||8–3||Masakatsu Funaki||Pancrase-Road To The Championship 4||Submission (Choke)||Round 1, 2:30||Osaka, Japan|
|1994-07-26||Win||8–2||Bas Rutten||Pancrase-Road To The Championship 3||Submission (Rear Naked Choke)||Round 1, 16:42||Tokyo, Japan|
|1994-07-06||Win||7–2||Matt Hume||Pancrase-Road To The Championship 2||Submission (Armlock)||Round 1, 5:50||Amagasaki, Hyogo, Japan|
|1994-04-21||Win||6–2||Ryushi Yanagisawa||Pancrase-Pancrash! 3||Submission (Heel Hook)||Round 1, 7:30||Osaka, Japan|
|1994-01-19||Loss||5–2||Minoru Suzuki||Pancrase-Pancrash! 1||Submission (Heelhook/Kneebar)||Round 1, 7:37||Yokohama, Kanagawa, Japan|
|1993-12-08||Win||5–1||Andre Van Den Oetelaar||Pancrase-Yes, We are Hybrid Wrestlers 4||Submission (Heel Hook)||Round 1, 1:04||Hakata, Fukuoka, Japan|
|1993-11-12||Loss||4–1||Royce Gracie||UFC 1 – The Beginning||Submission (gi choke)||Round 1, 0:57||Denver, Colorado, US|
|1993-11-12||Win||4–0||Patrick Smith||UFC 1 – The Beginning||Submission (Heel Hook)||Round 1, 1:49||Denver, Colorado, US|
|1993-11-08||Win||3–0||Takaku Fuke||Pancrase-Yes, We are Hybrid Wrestlers 3||Submission (Rear Naked Choke)||Round 1, 0:44||Kobe, Hyogo, Japan|
|1993-10-14||Win||2–0||Kazuo Takahashi||Pancrase-Yes, We are Hybrid Wrestlers 2||Submission (Heel Hook)||Round 1, 12:23||Nagoya, Aichi, Japan|
|1993-09-21||Win||1–0||Masakatsu Funaki||Pancrase - Yes, We are Hybrid Wrestlers 1||Submission (Arm Triangle Choke)||Round 1, 6:15||Urayasu, Chiba, Japan|