Any MMA fighter on Earth could probably murder me. Well, maybe not all of them. I can be sneaky and lack morals, so I could get the drop on a few with a pair of scissors in the eye or a shrimp fork in an artery. But good ones would literally break me in half. I am not writing this to insult you! Please don’t murder me.
That said, there are two key elements to being an MMA fighter. One is a willingness to brutally attack another human in an effort to beat them into unconsciousness for fun and profit. The other is a nickname. You can fight using your own name, but that’s terrible. Nicknames are much more creative. Problem is, some of them just get out of hand. Some nicknames have transcended “Lefty” or “T-Bone” and just gone into the realm of mad as a meth-addled hatter and they’ve actually become awesome again.
Cuki "The Flying Cockroach" Alvarez
Do you know what’s remarkable about cockroaches? Their cells don’t divide all the time the way the cells of a human do, which means that, at any given moment, if a cockroach is exposed to radiation, the roach will likely survive completely unscathed because radiation only damages cells in the process of division. In that narrow, sciency context, having “cockroach” as a nickname would make you kind of awesome. However, unless MMA events start taking place at Chernobyl, this is mostly irrelevant for Cuki Alavaraez. Nonetheless, he’s saddled with a moniker that basically makes him a nuclear-resistant flying poop-eater, which is intimidating in pretty much any context.
Lyle "Fancy Pants" Beerbohm
You may think there’s nothing to fear from a man who calls himself Fancy Pants but consider why a man would willingly go by the name Fancy Pants. He wants you to look at his pants to see if they actually live up to the moniker. Are they fancy? They are, and reportedly designed by his mom. So unconcerned is he with looking goofy, he’s drawing your attention to it. Why? Probably because he’s made of unrestrained pain and devastation. You’re making fun of his pants and then he’s breaking your sternum and filling your jejunum with blood. Blood that used to be in your ileum.
Kurt "Batman" Pellegrino
Batman’s real name is Bruce Wayne. This guy’s name isn’t. What a maroon.
Dustin “Diamond” Poirier
Diamonds are one of the hardest substances known to man and are highly valued (not for any good reason, but whatever). However, Dustin Diamond, also known as Screech from Saved by the Bell, is a twiggy degenerate who once gave a woman a Dirty Sanchez in a homemade porno film and is therefore disgusting. What way is Poirier going here? We don’t know!
Dan "The Police Officer" Copp
“Hey coach, I need a nickname that sounds cool with Dan Copp. When you’re done with that Big Gulp full of tequila and quaaludes, can you help me think of one?”
Trey “That Just Happened” Houston
Hey, what just happened? That’s a thing a guy might say if someone just kicked him so hard his ass prolapsed, which I think is counted as not just a KO, but two separate wins in pretty much every MMA promotion out there. So when Trey Houston picked that as his nickname, he was basically saying his foot is going to do things to your ass that the common man is going to be in awe of.
Ron "H2O" Waterman
This nickname couldn’t have been more obviously devised after a night of drinking if he’d opted for “Still Drunk” instead of “H2O.” You can almost see Ron and his buddies finishing off their Colt 45s and a nice cheese tray, realizing Ron has a fight in 10 minutes and putting their heads together with a whiteboard to try to come up with anything that might be relevant to a dude whose last name is Waterman.
Nick "The Promise" Ring
Many people will tell you this is one of the worst nicknames in all of MMA because “the Promise Ring” sounds as scary as “The Babysitter’s Club” or “My First Period.” Is he engaged to be engaged? Is he telling you he considers you more than a friend? Is he going to make you be the little spoon? All of these questions will be going through your head while he starts punching you and you’ll never get a satisfactory answer and that’s why he won the psychological game before you even entered the octagon.
“Dean of Mean” Keith Jardine
This is awesome for so many reasons. Imagine how long this chain of shit could keep going if you so desired? The Dean of Mean Hasn’t Been Seen Since He Fell in the Latrine with my Cousin Eugene. Man, rhyming is fun.
Jeremy "Lil Heathen" Stephens
So a heathen, traditionally, is one who does not believe in the Biblical God. So if you’re not Christian, Jewish or Muslim, you qualify as a heathen. Jeremy here is a lil one. So he only just a little bit doesn’t believe in your Lord. Just a lil. Instead he uses the power of his pagan gods to fight, but only slightly. Like maybe he channels a touch of Zeus, or Thor. But not much. Just a schtickle.
Logan "The Pink Pounder" Clark
This sounds like the sort of nickname a dude in the 70s would have given himself sometime after his 5th trip to the clinic to get a prescription for crab shampoo.
Jorge "The Naked Man" Ortiz
Lots of people will poo poo this nickname but I offer this argument – say you’re not watching a sanctioned MMA bout, but instead you’re in an alley and you’re about to be jumped by either The Iceman or the Naked Man, which one do you pick? You pick the Ice Man. No one is willingly fighting the Naked Man. It’s legitimately the more intimidating name.
Pedro "The Pedro" Otavio
I’m going to go out on a limb and suggest this is actually the best nickname not just in MMA, but perhaps in the world of nicknames. Pedro the Pedro is like the Hellraiser puzzle box of nicknames, a seemingly simple device that becomes infinitely more complex as you try to solve it. The utter complexity and madness of referring to yourself as “the” you is the kind of shit cult leaders do when they find their uppity followers questioning why they need to sign over their life savings. It flips the script and suddenly no one’s sure what’s right or wrong anymore, just that you are The You and that shit is dangerous, wild and weird.
Marcus “the Irish Hand Grenade” Davis
In direct competition with “The Pedro” for the greatest nickname in all of anything, the Irish Hand Grenade is layered in awesome. Is it in reference to some kind of makeshift IRA weapon? A really terrible drink involving a shot of fireball whiskey? Or, as the Urban Dictionary says, is it about having sex with your cousin? They’re all winners.