ATLANTA, GA - FEBRUARY 16: UFC President Dana White speaks during a press conference promoting UFC 145: Jones v Evans at Philips Arena on February 16, 2012 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Photo by Scott Cunningham/Getty Images)
Last week, Frank Shamrock continued his longstanding war of words with UFC president Dana White, calling Dana a "douchebag" while discussing his continually being snubbed by the UFC Hall of Fame. Dana White went on Sirius Radio to address Frank's comments and wasn't particularly kind in his response.
Frank Shamrock's always talking smack. I don't know what's worse, Frank Shamrock talking smack like he should be in the Hall of Fame or Spike TV having him on. We have the biggest fight of the year coming up and they have Frank Shamrock on there, the most irrelevant dude on the planet. Here's the thing about the UFC Hall of Fame in all honesty, you know, the UFC Hall of Fame this is - these are guys that we have been inducting that have done a lot for the sport since we've (ZUFFA) have taken over, you know what I mean? Here's a guy, you know, Frank Shamrock, Frank Shamrock hasn't done anything for the new UFC. And when I say the new UFC I mean the regulated, since it's been regulated, since it's been back on pay-per-view, mainstream television, all the things that have been done over the last 12 years, the guys who have been inducted have helped us get to where we are. Frank Shamrock isn't one of those guys.
There is a lot packed in the response.
First of all, we see a continuation of the "ZUFFA myth" by making it sound like they're the ones who got the sport regulated...etc. But that's mostly unimportant to the discussion here (though you can read about it here).
The main thing is the idea that they're inducting fighters who've done a lot for the sport since ZUFFA took over. What has Dan Severn done for MMA since the ZUFFA purchase? Mark Coleman came back to the UFC for an unspectacular late career run, but it's hard to argue that his post-ZUFFA contributions are something that puts someone over the top. Royce Gracie's post-ZUFFA contributions are nothing to write home about either.
Obviously, those guys all deserve to be in. But Shamrock's title reign is worthy by itself, but more important is his overall impact on the training methods of fighters. He helped take the sport to new heights and did it while being an undersized, yet dominant, champion. Acting as though anything he did held the sport back is absurd.
But this is why no one should take the UFC hall of fame seriously. There are no voters and it is based on whatever criteria they see fit and whatever version of history they feel like accepting at that moment. Had Tito not re-signed with the UFC and went to Strikeforce (pre-ZUFFA buyout) while still badmouthing Dana as he was at the time, do you think he would be getting inducted? It's not like anything that happened after he came back to the UFC boosted his legacy. If Ken Shamrock hadn't been inducted when things were "better" between himself and the UFC, do you think they would put him in today?
All this is why it's not even worth getting upset over Frank or Pat Miletich being snubbed anymore. It is what it is, and what it is..is not a real hall of fame.