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Roy Nelson Comes Out Swinging After Beating Kimbo Slice on 'TUF'

For better or worse, Roy Nelson and Kimbo Slice are the current talk of the MMA world. After Nelson defeated Slice on Wednesday's episode of The Ultimate Fighter, FanHouse spoke to the former IFL heavyweight champion about some of the criticism he has since received from Dana White and the fans, Herb Dean's decision to not stop the fight in the first round and Kimbo Slice's entourage.

The full interview is below.

Ariel Helwani: Have you noticed any drastic changes to your life since the fight aired on Wednesday night?
Roy Nelson: I've lost sleep because now I have to wake up early to do interviews.

That's it?
Yeah, that's the drastic change in my life. It kinda sucks.

So people aren't noticing you more where you live?

What did you think of the episode?
It was alright. I don't think it was a spectacular fight, by any means, but for the fans in the UFC in front of 10,000 fans plus, it would be a totally different fight. But since we're in the house, and we need to get three fights in five weeks, it's pretty clear what you want to do. Dana said it best, Roy went in, took no damage, and just won. And that's what I did. I like to be a good boy for Dana.

So your approach to the fight would have been different had this been a live fight on pay-per-view?
Definitely, because then you are actually looking for the entertainment value. I would actually probably throw a right hand. This fight, I didn't even throw a right hand, so I think I did pretty good just with my jab.

But didn't you want to impress Dana since he was watching you fight live for the first time in the Octagon?
I actually impressed him by letting him touch my belly. You know what? The thing that impresses people is just getting the 'w.' In that whole situation, they say they only have one contract, but apparently they already gave it to Kimbo, so I'm just trying to make sure I still have a job.

Dana has often said that he isn't impressed when a fighter just gets a victory. The Fabricio Werdum vs. Andrei Arlovski fight from April 2007 comes to mind as an example. So does a part of you wish you would have fought a more exciting fight?
Not really, because Werdum and Arlovski, they both got paid. For that fight, I wouldn't have been able to go to Burger King and actually buy me a Whopper. So I mean, it's a totally completely different aspect of what you are trying to do when you are in that house, because the whole thing is just about getting the 'w.' Dana said it for the last nine seasons, so if he's changing it for Kimbo, then you know what? It's all about the spin, and Dana is the best spin doctor, and I was just confused because I'm always trying to be a good boy and just listen to what Dana wants me to do.

What did Dana say to you after the fight?
I think he wasn't happy with that fight. I mean, everybody was really mad. Kimbo's whole entourage was there, which was kind of funny since we are all supposed to be isolated, but Kimbo actually had his whole fan base, the whole 305 over there. There's definitely some favoritism already built up there. Whatever. But they simply said to me that I have a better skill set than Kimbo, which I don't know if it's true. I'm just a fat guy. I'm going to go with one of my favorite sponsors, TapouT, [and say] I'm just bad for the sport.

Did you get the impression that the people working on the show were upset that Kimbo lost?
I'll tell you the executive producer of The Ultimate Fighter was very upset. He doesn't know fighting, he was just like, 'Oh, there goes my cash cow.'

Did he actually say that?
No, that was the impression I got.

Was that Craig Piligian?
Yeah, that's my favorite guy.

Oh, he's just my favorite.

Are you kidding?
No, he's a tall guy with glasses, and he's awesome. He makes the show look so spectacular because he's a good PR doctor.

Back to Kimbo's entourage, how many people were actually there because I didn't notice any extra people around?
Actually, if you go back and actually look at the clips, they are actually behind where Dana, Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta are. There's his entourage screaming 305. I mean, I didn't really get to see it because I was concentrating on the fight, but everybody kind of told me about it, and I was like, 'What?' I think he really did have a media room in the house because there was one door in our bedroom where it was locked all the time.

I don't know if he had an iPhone, but he definitely wasn't on the same contract as everybody else.

Was there any resentment in the house because of this?
No, we just had a list in the house, and we made sure we ordered food on his list because we knew Kimbo would get it.

Did his entourage come to the house?
Not actually at the house, but the fact that they could even show up was pretty, I guess, ballsy, I would say. It's kind of insulting.

So it bugged you?
Just that from what you're told and then what you see is totally different, yeah. It's very insulting when you think you have to put your life on hold for six weeks, and it's not really that.

Before you went on TUF, you were always kind of perceived as the lovable heavyweight with the big belly, but now it seems like some fans have turned on you beginning with the argument you had with Rashad Evans and after this fight. Have you noticed that?
You know what? I don't think it's my fans who have been following MMA for however long I've been in the business. It's actually the Kimbo fans because I kind of ruined or shattered their dreams. But I'm just kind of reopening their eyes or letting them know that their dream could still live on because I suck and I'm going to go around telling everybody I suck so bad that I'm the official suck-meter of the UFC. So if you can't beat me, and I just suck so bad, I'll be the gatekeeper, then you shouldn't even be in the UFC. So at least I'll always have a job because I really suck. I'm just a fat guy, out of shape. If you can't beat me, you need to get some new coaches or something.

Sounds like you are playing some mind games.
Not really mind games, but I'm just kind of going to go with the flow with what the fans are saying. I just want to be agreeable; I want to be a pleaser. And that's all I want to do. I want to please the fans or the haters. One or the other (laughs).

Are you just sitting back and laughing at some of the comments you've read recently about what kind of fighter you are?
I live in a reality TV show without the cameras daily now, so it's actually kind of funny. But just to read some of the comments, I just think people are either really stupid or they just don't know. But you know what? I'm just embracing it now. I'm so out of shape, I shouldn't fight, but you know what? The thing is, I beat Kimbo, so that doesn't really say much, I guess.

What do you mean when you say you live in a reality TV show?
Oh, just listening to people's comments and what everybody is saying, it's just drama. You can put it on during daytime on CBS or NBC, and you got your own drama show or soap opera (laughs).

Do you think that this will be the defining moment of your career?
I hope not. That was just another day in the office. I mean, you're supposed to win three fights in the house, so I'm hoping to get a couple of wins while I'm in the house and make it to the finale. I mean, we already know Kimbo's got another fight. I think he already took everybody's contract, so I don't even know why anyone is going to bother fighting in December.

Does it bug you that it has gotten out that he is going to fight again in December?
No, not really. This is the PR machine talking about there is only one contract, and now we know that it's a lie, unless Kimbo already took it. If Kimbo already has it then there's no more contracts.

On a recent edition of The MMA Hour, you said that trying out for TUF was strictly a business decision, and with that in mind, I wrote on Wednesday that you are the MMA businessman of the year because this all pretty much worked out perfectly for you. Do you agree with that assessment?
It was definitely a business decision. As for Kimbo, Kimbo is definitely one of the top 3 fighters, for sure, on Rampage's team. He's just very one-dimensional. That's why when you hear Kimbo talking about going down to 205, that notion came from me when we had a long discussion of MMA business. So, I am the businessman when it comes to MMA, so I know kind of what's going on just like Dana, who is playing the awesome game of spin doctor to keep Kimbo relevant, because the one thing Kimbo does is put butts in the seats. So does Ken Shamrock.

Were you impressed with any part of his game?
The one thing I was impressed with was afterward -- we're roommates -- he wanted to know how to get out of the crucifix, so I showed him what I was doing and how I beat him, the whole nine yards. At the same time, I was looking at his forehead, and was thinking, 'Man, you look like the elephant man,' because he had a big hematoma on his forehead. But for the most part, that's the thing that I respected most. Just the fact that he wanted to learn. At the same time, I don't know if that was just a game, but for the most part, me and Kimbo always got along.

Was it awkward to share a room with Kimbo after beating him?
No, because in the pecking order of the house, everybody kind of knew where everybody kind of stood in the house, and me and Kimbo, I think we got a pretty good friendship going, and the best guy was going to win.

Have you talked to him since leaving the house?
I talked to him twice, and then tomorrow I'll be talking to him.

What's happening tomorrow?
Tomorrow we are filming the Spike TV show, 'Aftermath.'

Back to the fight, do you think Herb Dean should have stopped it at the end of the first round?
I think Herb Dean is a retard.

Really? Because, as I'm sure you know, he's considered one of the best referees in MMA.
I beg to differ. I mean, he's a little better than some of the Florida refs, I'll give him that. But Herb is very, I want to say, controlled by some influential people just because he was afraid to stop the fight because he was like, 'Am I going to get fired? I don't know? Am I going to get fired.' And I'm sitting there yelling at Herb. The biggest thing going through my mind was, Oh, Florida all over again. That's all I could think of. And then when we got to the second round, I was just thinking that if we get to that point, I would make sure we count. I even started counting, the whole nine yards. I know I was going to get in that same position again, and it wasn't going to be a big deal. But this time I was going to do it right away versus waiting towards the end of the round because Kimbo tried to come at me, and that's exactly what I wanted. [I wanted] him to body clinch so he did the work, and I didn't have to do it. Jiu jitsu 101: make the other guy do all the work. Then, once I got there, took him down and just crucifixed him again, but now I got four minutes to work, and it doesn't matter how long I do it; I could do it forever.

Did you say anything to Herb after the fight?
Yeah, I was like, 'Hey, Herb, what were you thinking?,' and he just walked away. So I was like, 'Hey, good reffing, Herb.' I mean, what can you say? It's a ref, you can't really badmouth him. You can just point out the obvious and the facts. 'Were you waiting until I got to 50?' I think that's what I asked. I said, 'How many punches does it take?'

Was it hard to keep the secret of this outcome to yourself?
Not really, because it's really just another day in the office. I was just curious about how everyone was going to talk. You know, the spin doctor. I just like to know how people are going to portray things. Like, Kimbo now says he wants to fight me, which would be great. I could always use a 'w' that actually counts on my record. But for the most part, he just needs to win a couple more fights, and then I would be happy to give him that. They could do like EliteXC, and give him the easy road to, I guess, keep him relevant, and then he could fight me again because he will probably get to the UFC championship before I would just because he puts butts in the seats, and then after that, I could steal his thunder.

If you were in charge of the UFC, would you bring him back?
Yeah, because he makes money for them. Remember, I am the businessman of the year (laughs).

But do you think he deserves to be fighting in the big leagues, so to speak.
Hey, welcome to the new boxing. Dana has said that before. We can actually get Bob Arum. What a retard.

Alright, well how will you spend your time for the next couple of months?
Like always, I always train, because it's one of those habits I've formed because you never know when you'll get that phone call. But I'm actually just going to watch the show to see how it all unfolds. Hopefully, we'll see Kimbo fight again and maybe get beat by somebody else. I don't know.

You sound like one of those Spike promos.
Hey, I still gotta keep Dana happy and the UFC. I mean, you never know. You got Marcus Jones passing out, so maybe Kimbo ... In my latest blog I said, I was going to maybe be walking upstairs and have a heart attack. Maybe he took my spot. We don't know.

Finally, you still happy you did the show?
So far, yes. I probably will always say yes because it's good exposure and a good business move. I don't know the numbers yet, but hopefully there are 7 million more people who know me more than before.

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