Kimbo Slice Dies in a Florida Hospital at 42
MMA fighter, Kimbo Slice, passed away Monday, June 5th near his home in South Florida. While there are conflicting reports, sources close to his family are saying the cause of death was heart failure. Slice, who’s real name is Kevin Ferguson, was just 42 years old.
Bellator President & CEO Scott Coker confirmed the passing of Slice:
“We are all shocked and saddened by the devastating and untimely loss of Kimbo Slice, a beloved member of the Bellator family,” Coker expressed in a statement. “One of the most popular MMA fighters ever, Kimbo was a charismatic, larger-than-life personality that transcended the sport.”
“Outside of the cage he was a friendly, gentle giant and a devoted family man. His loss leaves us all with extremely heavy hearts, and our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Ferguson family and all of Kimbo’s friends, fans and teammates,” Coker continued.
Many Celebrities and fellow fighters made their way to social media to offer their condolences.
An Overnight Sensation
Slice seemingly became an overnight sensation when his street fights went viral on YouTube. He entered MMA shortly after, making his debut in the cage for EliteXC in November 2007 by knocking out fellow fighter, Bo Cantrell.
EliteXC brought Slice along slowly, but backed him strongly given his extreme popularity. He started off 3-0, but Seth Petruzelli shocked the Mixed Martial Arts world with a technical knock out (TKO) victory in October 2008.
UFC president Dana White signed Slice to be a contestant on “The Ultimate Fighter 10.” He was quickly eliminated in the tournament’s first round by Roy Nelson, who went on to take the show.
Slice made his UFC debut by beating Houston Alexander, but left after getting dominated by Matt Mitrione in his next outing in May 2010.
Slice then tried his hand at boxing, where kicks and take-downs are eliminated from the contest. He went a perfect 7-0.
Bellator signed Slice in January 2015. Both of his fights were incredible hits. Slice had set Spike Television’s live event record in his victory over Ken Shamrock last June with 1.6 million (peaking at 2.4 million) viewers.
Slice followed that up by co-headlining Bellator 149 against Dhafir “Dada 5000” Harris. The event peaked at 2.7 million viewers, who watched his win over Harris. However, the bout was overturned to a no contest after Slice tested positive for steroids and heightened levels of testosterone after the fight.
Slice was scheduled to fight James Thompson at Bellator 158 on July 16 in London.
(Kimbo Slice Dies)