When UFC middleweight Tim Kennedy eats alphabet soup, he only eats the U, the S and the A. But somehow he only poops the F* and the U. Tim Kennedy doesn’t have a ring tone. He has buglers that follow him around and play the National Anthem when someone calls him. For the buglers’ sake, don’t call during dinner.
*F is always for Freedom
There are few ‘Mericans more revered around This Week in ‘Merica’s water cooler than UFC fighter Tim Kennedy. He’s not just the UFC’s sixth-ranked middleweight. He’s also currently a National Guard Special Forces green beret. I can tell from the way you look like an Alabama fan in a spelling bee that you don’t fully grasp the enormity of what I just said. You know the character Snake, from the video game Metal Gear Solid? Special Forces operator. Ever heard of Rambo? Operator. Tim Kennedy is one of those guys, but in real life, a literal weekend warrior in the Army National Guard.
At UFC 178, on September 27, this great ‘Merican takes on Yoel Romero, an up-and-comer who’s relatively unknown to the non-MMA fan. Romero’s 7 and 1 overall and on a 4-fight UFC winning streak. Before starting his MMA career, he won an Olympic silver medal for Cuba in wrestling. Then he defected. To Germany.
While Romero was busy defecting, Kennedy was deploying with the U.S. Army multiple times to Iraq and Afghanistan, earning among other things, a Bronze Star Medal (with Valor device), which on the ladder of awards for individual achievement in fighting for our freedom is only 3 rungs below a Medal of Honor.
We caught up with Kennedy during a timeout from his fight camp and can only assume that he was, in fact, wearing his medal at the time.
TWIM: At UFC 178 your fellow Jackson’s MMA fighter, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, finally welcomes Eddie “the Silent Assassin” Alvarez to the UFC. Who’s more ‘Merican, Cowboy or Alvarez?
TK: Cowboy, hands down, no doubt, red, white, and blue. That guy personifies what it means to be a ‘Merican in everything he does. He doesn’t consciously realize that drinking a beer, on a boat, holding a shotgun, while he’s trying to convince a bald eagle to fly onto his shoulder is abnormal. To him, that’s just what a good Tuesday afternoon should be.
TWIM: Aside from highly-decorated Marine, Brian Stann, what other UFC fighter would you most like to have next to you in the trenches when we go meet ISIS in some dark, hot and sandy alleyway?
TK: Stann would be number one. Then Randy Couture. He was a soldier, and wrestled for the all-Army team. And I’ll take Donald Cerrone again. Then Darren Cruickshank.
TWIM: Another UFC signing, Brian Ortega, popped hot in August for PEDs, something you’ve been very vocal about in the past. Who has more drug users on its roster, the UFC or 1996’s Death Row Records featuring Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre and Lisa “Left Eye” Lopez?
TK: That’s a pretty competitive comparison there. [With 2 positive drug tests in a row, including Ortega] Black House MMA is like the new Blackzillians from ’07-’08. Everybody over there is pissing hot for something. While it is different substances, I’m going to have to go with the UFC roster.
TWIM: What does the UFC need to do to address their drug problem?
TK: The testing has to be random. Right now, I’m a month out from my fight, and I could be injecting just about every single performance-enhancing drug today and I’d still be clean on fight night. It has to be done 15 weeks out, 10 weeks out, then fight night.
TWIM: Rumor has it you own an American flag singlet. On a scale of 1 to Betsy Ross, how American do you feel when you put it on?
TK: First, I don’t mean to sharpshoot you, but I actually own seven American flag singlets. Some of them just say USA over and over again. Some of them are military-themed, so I have a Marine on my right butt cheek, an Air Force airman on my left butt cheek, an Army soldier on my right chest. I don’t know how the Coast Guard made it on there, but they did, they’re on my left chest. And then there’s a bald eagle flying across my stomach.
TWIM: American servicemen obviously gravitate towards you. Do you feel any extra pressure as the military’s favorite fighter?
TK: I feel extra power. There’s no anxiety about being the unspoken face of soldiers in the UFC. I just have to go out there and be a badass. Fortunately, [to keep my fans happy] I just have to hit people hard, and that’s what my job is.
TWIM: Are you going to enjoy beating Romero more because he’s possibly a Communist? Or because it’ll prove (again) America is better at fighting than both Cuba and Germany?
TK: I don’t think it’s a secret that I hate Communism. I’m a capitalist in every definition of the word. So now we’re talking about pressure. I’d have to hand in my American flag singlet if I lost to him.
TWIM: Romero’s wrestling cred is as good as it gets, but you’ve beaten great grapplers before, even getting the better of Roger Gracie on the ground. Do you get extra enjoyment beating guys at their own game?
TK: My coaches reeeally love it when I do that. There’s an element of idiot to me. I wouldn’t even say “element.” It might be the majority of my personality. I wanted to out-land Bisping on our feet, which I did. I wanted to out-grapple Roger Gracie on the ground, which I did. Do I enjoy it? Maybe a little bit. But I think it has more to do with just…I’m a moron.
TWIM: This is the 4th foreign opponent you’ve faced in a row. Coincidence? Or is the UFC angling for you to take Randy Couture’s “Captain America” nickname?
TK: There’s no such thing as coincidence. The U.S.A. is back-to-back World War champs, and I’m just trying to keep that trend going.
TWIM: What are you going to do after you beat Romero?
TK: I was going to go to Disneyland, but instead I’m going to go with a couple of awesome Special Forces soldiers and do some ridiculously-American things. The week before fight camp started I was supposed to be with two buddies that went to Afghanistan with me that got messed up pretty bad. We were going to go on a trip through the Veteran Outdoors organization, but it fell through at the last minute. So we’re going to do that right after the fight.
‘Merican of the Week
This one’s pretty obvious. For his unwavering commitment to truth, justice, and the ‘Merican way of terrorist buttkickery, Tim Kennedy is hereby awarded 11 freedom points, making him the all-time FP leader.
Tim, your actions bring great credit upon yourself, your fight camp, and your American flag singlet. But for Lincoln’s sake, wash that thing.
Might be a Terrorist of the Week
Gotta be the Olympic non-gold-medal winning (second place is just the first loser), former Communist, World War shutout-suffering Yoel Romero.
Until next time, patriots, may all your flags be waving, all your rockets’ glare be red, and all your singlets be filled with the musky smell of freedom.
Find more of Tim’s thoughts on ISIS, PEDs and Ranger panties (a real thing) on Twitter.
Find more of my thoughts on Tim’s thoughts on Twitter.