Nickname Fail: The Case for a Nickname Hall of Fame/Shame [UPDATED]

Ask a group of friends, "Did anyone catch the 'Hands of Stone' fight last night?" or "How about that 'Hitman,' he sure has some power in his hands!" and they'd probably assume you had been up late watching ESPN Classic. The reason is that everyone knows that "Hands of Stone" is Roberto Duran and "The Hitman" is Tommy Hearns. The problem is that, in MMA, Sam Stout has also taken the nickname "Hands of Stone" and Martin Kampmann is now known as "The Hitman." 

As an old boxing fan, this kind of bugs me. And these are just two of many examples. And this issue isn't even isolated to boxing nickname crossovers. Everyone knows who "The Natural" is, right? Randy Couture!...or is it John Alessio? How about "The Hammer?" Gotta be referring to the UFC Hall of Famer Mark Coleman...or do you mean Matt Hamill?

For this reason I propose a Combat Sports Nickname Hall of Fame. I imagine it being kind of like hanging a Jersey number in the rafters. Once it's up there, no one else is allowed to wear it. And if you are currently using one of these nicknames? You've failed...try again. The biggest benefit of this would be the fact that fighters would be forced to become more creative with their nicknames. Oh, and while I'm at it, no lame shortenings of your name allowed either (Ken Flo, Kos, and or whatever Lauzon is calling himself these day...I'm looking at you).

This first list is my attempt at the Top 25 boxing nicknames that would be candidates to be retired into the Combat Sports Nicknames Hall of Fame:


Retired Boxing Nicknames Rightful Owner Nickname Fail…
"Big Daddy" Riddick Bowe Joe Stevenson
"Big" George Foreman Lavar Johnson
"Bonecrusher" James Smith Errol Zimmerman
"Boom Boom" Ray Mancini Michael Buchkovich
"Executioner" Bernard Hopkins -
"Golden Boy" Oscar De La Hoya Badr Hari
"Hands of Stone" Roberto Duran Sam Stout
"Hitman" Tommy Hearns Martin Kampmann
"Hurricane" Rubin Carter Gerald Harris
"Iron" Mike Tyson Mike Whitehead
"Lights Out" James Toney Chris Lytle
"Macho" Hector Camacho -
"Marvelous" Marvin Hagler Melvin Manhoef
"Merciless" Ray Mercer -
"Pac-Man" Manny Pacquaio -
"Raging Bull" Jake Lamotta Rich Attonito 
"Second To" Michael Nunn -
"Smok'in" Joe Frazier Joey Villasenor
"Sugar" Ray Robinson Rashad Evans
"Sweet Pea" Pernell Whitaker -
"The Greatest" Muhammad Ali -
"The Italian Stallion" Rocky Balboa -
"The Living Death" Lew Jenkins -
"The Real Deal" Evander Holyfield Ross Pearson
"The Truth" Carl Williams Brandon Vera


This next list is my attempt at the Top 25 MMA nicknames to be retired into the Hall of Fame:


Retired MMA Nicknames Rightful Owner Nickname Fail…
"American Psycho" Stephen Bonnar -
"Dean of Mean" Keith Jardine -
"Iceman" Chuck Liddell -
"Korean Zombie" Chan Sung Jung -
"Mr. Wonderful" Phil Davis -
"Muscle Shark" Sean Sherk -
"Rampage" Quinton Jackson -
"Sexyama" Yoshihiro Akiyama -
"Spider" Anderson Silva Kendal Grove*
"Stun Gun" Dong Hyun Kim -
"The Anvil" Manvel Gamburyan -
"The Axe Murder" Wanderlei Silva -
"The Carny" Nik Lentz -
"The Carpenter" Clay Guida -
"The Crippler" Chris Leben Manny Reyes Jr. 
"The Last Emperor" Fedor Emelianenko -
"The Fireball Kid" Takanori Gomi -
"The Hammer" Mark Coleman Matt Hamill
"The Heat" Karo Parisyan -
"The Horror" Rick Story -
"The Natural Born Killer" Carlos Condit -
"The Natural" Randy Couture John Alessio
"The Prodigy" BJ Penn -
"The Smashing Machine" Mark Kerr -
"Twinkle Toes" Frank Trigg -
   *I know he's technically "Da Spida" but still…


One note is that I have not considered K-1 fighters for this list. A few that come to mind would be "The Flying Gentleman" Remy Bonjasky and "The Lumberjack" Peter Aerts. I'm curious to hear others that you would add to the list from boxing, MMA, or K-1.



Retired MMA Nicknames Rightful Owner Nickname Fail…
“Filthy”  Tom Lawlor -
"Barn Cat" Tamdan McCroy -
"Bigfoot" Antonio Silva -
"Butterbean" Eric Esch -
"Cro Cop" Mirko Filipovic -
"Hellboy" Joachim Hansen  -
"Irish Hand Grenade" Marcus Davis -
"Minotauro" Big Nog -
"Mr. Perfect" Ernesto Hoost -
"Ninja" Murilo Rua -
"Pitbull" ???? way too many
"Rush" GSP -
"Shogun" Mauricio Rua -
"Tank" David Abbot -
"The Angel of Death" Damacio Page -
"The Beast" Dan Severn Bobb Sapp
"The Dentist" Josh Neer -
"The Grim" Bret Rogers -
"The Law" Matt Lindland Rafael Dias
"The Mexicutioner" Joey Beltran -
"The Predator" Don Frye Patrick Cote
"The Promise" Nick Ring -
"War Machine" War Machine War Machine
“The Beastman” Marvin Eastman -
“The Janitor” Vladamir Matyushenko -

\The FanPosts are solely the subjective opinions of Bloody Elbow readers and do not necessarily reflect the views of Bloody Elbow editors or staff.

Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Bloody Elbow

You must be a member of Bloody Elbow to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bloody Elbow. You should read them.

Join Bloody Elbow

You must be a member of Bloody Elbow to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Bloody Elbow. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.