Before there was the UFC-Reebok deal, five years ago at UFC 133, Dennis Hallman wore Speedo shorts to the Octagon, and it turned into a bit of an issue with Dana White and ridiculed in the media. What did Hallman have to say about his choice of ring wear? Let’s go back five years ago this week to Jamie Penick’s MMATorch.com article…
Dennis Hallman’s cage-attire on Saturday night at UFC 133 left little to the imagination, and drew the ire of UFC President Dana White – who gave his opponent Brian Ebersole a $70,000 bonus for defeating him quickly to get the short shots off television.
Hallman’s Speedo look on Monday was then added to ESPN Page 2’s list of the “Worst Looks in Sport History,” and with a big deal being made out of it, Hallman explained his reasoning for wearing it on Saturday night.
“I’m not regretful,” Hallman said in an interview with MMAjunkie.com. “It’s not like I’m the first guy to wear Speedos. Maybe I’m the first guy in the modern UFC era to do it. Other than that, there’s nothing for anybody to make a big deal about.”
Hallman says he lost a bet with some training partners, and the Speedo’s were what resulted. However, it wasn’t his (revealing) attire that bothered him on fight night, it was a severely injured elbow that impacted his performance against Ebersole. The injury happened just two days before the fight, but he didn’t pull out of the event.
“When it boils down to it, I didn’t have any go with my right arm,” he said. “I’m actually heading to the specialist down in Oregon to get it checked out. It’s 21 inches in diameter right now.”
He tweeted a picture of the elbow on Sunday night, and he believes his inability to do much with the arm cost him a chance to finish the fight in the first round when he had Ebersole’s back. Because of that, Hallman hopes to get another shot at Ebersole down the line.
“I pray for a rematch against that guy because I know I could smash him,” he said. “I just have to be healthy. Literally, I can’t bend my wrist and touch my shoulder with my wrist. I couldn’t hit pads to warm up.
“I was going to try to get to the best position I could and try to finish him. If it worked out, it worked out. If it didn’t, I was going to be in a whole load of trouble, which is where I found myself.”
Penick’s Analysis: Hallman’s not the first to wear short, Speedo-like trunks, but his were even shorter than many have worn in the past and ultimately he had a bit of a wardrobe malfunction while grappling with Ebersole. Still, it was gutsy of him to fight through the injury, but it is definitely unfortunate for him that it would not allow him to really go for the rear naked choke when he had Ebersole’s back for an extended period of time. He’ll need to recover, and may be on thin ice in his next fight in the UFC because of White’s reaction to his attire in this fight.