With the rise in popularity of MMA, there was a guy called Kimbo Slice. He's the only MMA fighter I know by look and name. Because CBS plastered his mug everywhere when they first started their MMA program. IIRC, he hadn't fought professionally before (there are a number of videos of him street fighting on YouTube), was super tough, and was going to electrify the MMA world. He was going to be the Juggernaut of the MMA circuit.
Slice has pretty much bombed out. I don't think he's won a single match and got his ass handed to him every time. To his credit, I haven't heard of Slice going around hyping himself as the greatest thing to walk the Earth, but everyone around him has. Slice has returned on The Ultimate Fighter, the reality show on Spike TV. In an interesting twist, TUF is presenting Slice as a humble underdog everyman trying to prove his worth against people he can't hope to beat -- kind of like Rocky in the original movie. His scrappiness and heart are becoming his selling points. Even though he was saved by the bell in the first round and it was called early in the second, he was still getting praised for getting out there.
I don't want to pick on Slice. Or, more accurately, I refuse to. The guy has a wife and kids, and like any decent human being, wants to help provide for them. With the MMA circuit, he has a chance to make some decent coin, and I don't begrudge the guy that. "Let's see -- the best way I can provide for my family is by letting myself be used as a punching bag and be repeated humiliated on national TV." Right or wrong, that takes guts. It's also why I'm not exactly hinging on the excitement of his "underdog" role. I mean, I'm hoping for the best for the guy, but his life is not his own. He is just part of an entertainment machine, which is packaging him in a way to hook viewers and bring in ad money.
I won't watch the show, I don't care to. But somewhere, I hope that Slice gets a fair shake. And that somewhere down the line, he finds a way to provide for his family that doesn't require sacrificing his pride.