UFC 6-10 proved to be a trying series of events where the UFC was struggling to find their identity and protect the organization and the sport of MMA from being deemed illegal. The typical tournament style format was still going strong, but we also saw the first ever implementation of an all predetermined card, to the dismay of fans.
Rules changed to adhere to mounting political pressure lead by Senator John McCain, who campaigned strongly against the "no-holds-barred" events. A backlash from major cable corporations such as TCI began to take hold as well, resulting in many companies dropping dropping Pay-Per-View events featuring the UFC. This stretch of events would prove to the most difficult and important period for the future of the Ultimate Fighting Championship and the sport of MMA in general.
FiveKnuckles.com's Gavin Vincent takes you through each UFC event as we explore MMA from its early days of no weight classes, gloves, or rules... to the fastest growing sport in America. This latest installment takes a closer look at UFC 6-10.
UFC 6: Clash of the Titans
UFC 6 featured the crowning of the first non-tournament UFC Champion, an eight-man tournament, and two alternate fights which were not shown on the live pay-per-view broadcast. The event continued the superfight left over from UFC 5 which failed to produce a champion between Ken Shamrock vs. Royce Gracie. This time the superfight featured Ken Shamrock fighting "The Beast" Dan Severn. Matches had no rounds and no judges were used for the night. Referees were given the power to stand a fight back up if a stalemate occurred, Michael Buffer served as guest ring announcer and Baywatch's own David Hasselhoff had front row seats for the evening. UFC 6 also saw Oleg Taktarov walk into the finals against Tank Abbott after Patrick Smith withdrew due to injury. Furious with Smith, Abbott's entourage sucker punched him the next morning for backing out of the semifinals as he came out of a hotel elevator. Smith was so badly injured he was hospitalized and later released.
Eight-man Tournament Rules
- No weight classes or time limits
- Officially adopted 5 minute extensions to 30 minute rule
*Quarterfinal/Semifinal Rules: 20 minute time limit
*Finals/Superfight Rules: 30 minute time limit
Commentators: Bruce Beck, Jeff Blatnick & Jim Brown
Date: Jul. 14, 1995
Location: Casper, Wyoming
Purchase Rate: 240,000
- Tank Abbott def. John Matua by knockout *Abbott then mocked an unconscious Matua
- Paul Varelans def. Cal Worsham by knockout
- Patrick Smith def. Rudyard Moncayo by submission (rear-naked choke) *Smith withdrew from the tournament due to stomach cramping
- Oleg Taktarov def. Dave Beneteau by submission (guillotine choke)
- Ken Shamrock def. Dan Severn by submission (guillotine choke) *Shamrock became the first crowned champion in UFC history.