Just now, I came across a sad bit of info- Antonio "Mandingo" McKee could be retiring soon. Per Steve Cofield: McKee's 'Loser Leaves Town' match forced by racism?:
Never heard the name Antonio McKee? Most casual fans of mixed martial arts haven't. The 40-year-old with a 24-3-2 record has never reached the bigs or gotten the exposure he feels he deserves. Part of the problem may be that the takedown artist, who hasn't lost since 2003, has turned in decision victories in 12-of-14 fights. So McKee is pulling out all the stops to get eyes on his next fight saying if he doesn't finish Luciano Azevedo on Sept. 10, he'll retire. McKee told Fanhouse's Ben Fowlkes:
"This is what I said. I said, if this fight goes to a decision and it's a boring decision, I retire. If this fight is not the fight of the night, I retire. Basically, if I don't go out there and put on a show, just destroy and annihilate this guy, then I'm done. If it's one of those matches where I take him down, ground and pound, holding him there, I retire. I'm done. [...]
"I don't have to stand up and get hit in the face. No one can stop me from taking them down and no one can hit me when we're standing. What the fans want to see are the knockouts, the blood, the gory stuff. They want to see that, and I'm not about that."
Without a loss for seven years, why hasn't he been signed by the UFC? Pointing to the popularity of ground and pound fighters like Matt Hughes, Georges St. Pierre and Sean Sherk, McKee says those guys have one thing going for them. McKee, again from Fanhouse:
"I think a lot of it is racist. And I'm not saying racist against all black people necessarily, but racist towards me. You have these white guys who do the same exact thing, why doesn't anyone say this stuff about them?"
McKee says no one gives the UFC welterweight champ guff for his deliberate style.
"Georges St. Pierre, he doesn't even get hit anymore. And afterwards, he says, 'I'm not a brawler; I'm a mixed martial artist.' And then you have people talking about how great he is. I do exactly what you saw him do, but better!"
He said just look at fellow African-American Yves Edwards.
"The guy that had stood with them the longest there was Yves Edwards. He lost one fight, got triangled, then had a stoppage due to a cut against Joe Stevenson and they cut him. What? You got white guys who have been knocked out three or four times and keep coming back. Chuck [Liddell] has been knocked out so many times they need to make a stone with his name on it."
Maybe this stunt will work. Who knows? Is McKee right? Did he play it smart? By taking no chances over the years, he got wins but he got no one's attention. Congrats on a good career.
Mixed emotions here- first off, I am a little offput by him accusing MMA fans of being racist, but he does bring up some valid points; especially with the recent topic of Anderson Silva's (lack of) drawing power, and people saying that his race plays a part in that, I think there's at least a little truth value to that statement.
There are some obvious fallacies of logic in his argument, right off the bat- he's claiming that noone's criticized GSP for being safe and not taking risks lately, but that's the opposite of the truth; I feel like that's all I hear about St. Pierre these days. Also, comparing Yves Edwards to Chuck doesn't hold water; Chuck's on the tail end of his career, he ruled the division with highlight reel KO's for years, and he was one of the UFC's biggest stars, whereas only the hardcore fans even know who Yves is
We all know his well documented lack of finishes, but he has made an effort lately- he finished an unknown opponent back in march (as I documented a while back: On March 20'th, 2010, something amazing happened). His next fight is against submission specialist Luciano Azevedo though, who holds wins over Rodrigo Damm, Din Thomas, Jean Silva, & a RNC win over Jose Aldo; by all accounts, Mandingo is no TKO machine, and he's unlikely to sub Azevedo, so if he wins it will most likely be via decision. Hopefully he's just blowing smoke.
Because honestly, McKees a very good fighter, and IMO he has enough gas in the tank to possibly make a good showing in Strikeforce, Bellator, Dream/ WVR, or maybe even the UFC; his powerhouse wrestling skills & suffocating top game are enough to give any fighter absolute fits. I just think it'd be a shame for someone with the obvious physical gifts he has to be a never was as opposed to a (potential) relevant fighter of his time.