UFC Co-Founder David Isaacs - Lytes Out Deep Dive *****

In for later

This podcast does good shit. I just started checking them out and I am impressed. Gonna squirrel some of my time coming up….


Where Ya Been2 !

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had to post somewhere
tito on lyoto

. He was running the whole time. Last time I saw an MMA match, we fight. We bring it on in the fight; we don’t make it disinteresting for the fans. I’ve always been like that making a fight interesting for the fans. But he would run. I got over-extended, he dropped me, got a couple of punches and I pushed his arm through and triangle lock. Then he got out of it because I switched to an arm lock.

Believe me I kick myself every single day. No one is going to get out of my triangles ever again. I’ve been drilling them so much ever since this fight. It’s just one of those things where I can catch somebody in that position, they are not getting away. Machida got lucky, which is fine, he’s undefeated. But who wants to watch a boring fighter who runs away the whole time and doesn’t fight? It just shows where his career is going to be going.

Wow thanks for confirming this as it was a long time ago and easy to mix up the country.

Looked up the fights and that is the event where I met the guy. It was early in the evening before the fights started.

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In the interview we talk about that

That also seemed to open the door for certain UFC employees to try to make some money on the UFC back without including the organization

A few people got fired over it

  • Buddy Albin Art Davie
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These are my show notes that I drew my questions from

Original UFC Team
Art Davie
Bob Meyrowitz
Campbell McLauren - head of programming
David Isaacs chief operating officer
Rorian Gracie

Graduated Harvard Law 2 years prior

MMA Start up
Pancrase Sep 21 1993
UFC Nov 12 1993
Pride Oct 11 1997

Nov 12 1993

  • was AD in charge of picking Denver? How involved was rest of group
  • Art Davie claimed that Rickson got caught stealing personal training sessions and was punished and not let in UFC 1
  • Bob M was NOT at the event

Leon Spinks & Bonecrusher Smith were picks prior to Art Jimerson

  • AJ offered $20k making him highest paid
  • Was AJ ofdeeed a piece of the UFC company?

Gerard Gordeau kicked a tooth out of the mouth of Telia Tuli that flew past the Golds Gym sponsor

  • they left shortly after
    2 more teeth were implanted in his feet which were wrapped up and not removed
  • GG fought 2 more x afterward

Did the UFC try to get Ernesto Hoost for UFC 1 but could not afford him so they got GG?

UFC 1 to UFC 2
8 man tournament to 16 man tournament

March 11 1994

  • Art Davie negotiated that SEG would pay for fighters purses this event
  • Because of that he made a 16 man tournament - did this change sour the relationship
    It seems that the operating license between Davie and SEG was not settled and very fluid - was this a detriment to all of the parties trusting each other?

Ran out of ambulances

  • did this hurt the brand in Denver

Sep 9 1994
Ken Shamrock pulled out after Royce Vs Howard

  • Negotiating with Ken?
  • Thoughts on Bob Shamrock
    Big divide between Bob and Ken

Harold Howard Vs Royce Gracie

  • did Royce pass out prior to fight
  • Any idea that they were going to throw the towel in right away
  • Backstage politics to make sure that it didn’t go down as a win for HH

Rickson tried to get $1M for fighting

  • when refused he no longer cornered or trained Royce

  • David Isaacs did NOT allow props being brought to the ring in order to avoid a pro wrestling confusion

  • Joe Son had a wooden box shipped to the arena and claimed that it was special Work out equipment; inside was the giant wooden cross that Kimo carried to the cage

Kimo - Chris Brennan story

Kimo letter to he Gracie’s apologizing for celebrating after Royce threw in towel against Harold Howard

  • otherwise he was blackballed by the Gracie’s

Keith hackney Vs Emmanuel Yarborough

Dec 16 1994
-was originally supposed to be held in Japan?

  • concerns on the no time limit aspect
  • Hackney Vs Joe Son
  • $64k tournament winner

April 7 1995

  • $50k tournament winner
    Reason for lowering prize money

July 14 1995
UFC 6 Tank Abbott and crew beat up Patrick Smith in an elevator

  • early impressions of Tito Ortiz

Tank Abbott Vs Oleg Taktarov
Did Anthony Macias take a dive against Oleg Taktarov

  • Tank is born as a star

Sep 8 1995
Marco Ruas

  • was their push back from the Gracie’s in regards to brining Luta Livre guys in
  • politically speaking did moves like this hurt Art Favie with Rorian and family

Dec 16 1995
Ultimate Ultimate
$150k winner

Feb 16 1996
UFC 8 in audience fight with Allan Goes
after party fight involving tank Abbott

  • Tank suspension, how did conversation go


  • Human Cock fighting

Mar 30 1996
“Ultimate warriors”
Buddy Albin - Russia show

  • Howard Petchler helped bill fights
  • Andy Anderson bailed them out financially
  • painted over UFC logo
  • Lots of controversy around this
    BA was the site coordinator for the UFC

At the Ultimate Ultimate 2
When Scott Ferrozo grabbed interviewer Bruce Beck and roughed him up a little

  • was their talks of suspension?

Feb 7 1997
UFC 12 move from New York to Alabama
political pressure
Perretti - Battlecade NY pressure - later

  • how far out did they start planning for a switch

Coleman beats Severn at UFC 12 they mention

  • Tank Abbott, Ken Shamrock, Don Frye
    They give him a .500 fighter from rings named Maurice Smith who had 0 UFC fights

May 30 1997
UFC 13 after party fight with Tank Abbott Mark Coleman vs Brazil

Jul 27 1997
UFC 14 from the Republic of Kazakhstan Poolat Mergaliev

  • July 27 1997
    What was the reason for bringing this political dignitary to the event?

First event that made gloves mandatory

  • what changed?

Oct 17 1997
UFC 15
John Perretti becomes match maker

  • why take that power away from Art Davie
  • Was that a move some to intentionally push Davie out?
    Bruce Beck last show as play by play
  • any reason for exit

Dec 21 1997
UFC Japan
Conan Silveira fought Sakuraba 2x’s

  • CS interview with us he stated that he was forced to do it due to the yukuza showing up in his locker room
  • How prevalent was the yukuza when dealing with Japan at the early UFC’s

Mar 19 1998
Art Davie wrote a letter to Bob Meyrowitz asking him to stop promoting UFC and sided with John McCain

  • was this over not being happy over severance package??

SEG sold to ZUFFA in 2000

  • issues with Nevada turning UFC down for sanctioning
  • Then ZUFFA getting a discounted price

2016 June
Campbell McLauren raised $2.6B trying to buy UFC

Iron Ring - Zilo Entertainment
Fighting without a Comission present

  • no one got paid
    Ludacris, Lil John, Floyd Mayweather, TI, Nelly, Julz Santana & Jim Jones

Zilo Entertainment
Almost had Wesley Snipes Vs Joe Rogan

SEG invested money into a David Hasselhof concert and it aired at the exact same time that OJ went on his low speed chase

  • did this drain them financially?

Vince McMahon purchase fell through

Thoughts on $4B sale of ufc

Kevin Randleman used to call Paula Romero (Bob Meyrowitz assistant) and yell at her about getting more fights

DI married UFC employee Monica

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Wow thanks

I meant to listen but have been on phone calls

Those notes topics look great

Truly just stopped taking a break sipping a bottle of water outside Houma LA

About to start driving again

Will listen

Quick view of notes topics seem like a lot of new / unknown

very interesting that art davie went to k-1 after ufc fired him, and he then tried to kill the ufc

something interesting and related

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Bro… has MMA also caused a divorce in your life???


Inam watching this tonight

The fight after Pat Smoth seems more like a demo than anything else

I am shocked at how large that crowd is

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Throwing random luggage out of the plane onto the tarmac at 5 to midnight to get under take off weight limit and out of the airport before it closes. Crazy.

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That part really stood out to me too.

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We are trying to do only UFC 1 people on October

We got Art Jimmerson, Zane Frazier so far

Shamrock records tomorrow

What we are uncovering
There seemed to be someone from the Gracie camp specifically assigned to follow each fighter ; following them to workouts and taping then.

Let’s just say… we got a few names that are going to surprise people


Interesting in the interview David I’s answer was a Whitney Houston concert was the topic for Kazakhstan.

The fella from Kazakhstan I chatted with said the reason for the visit to the show was to bring the UFC to Kazakhstan.

Couple of notes about that same show:

I recall seeing Jacare Cavalcanti and his crew there, waiting outside like everyone else for the doors to open. I recathis because I arrived at the place with a guy from Japan that was a early days big NHB and Japanese combat sports fan. I took to the time to explain to the guy from Japan about Jacare’s background etc.

Frank Shamrock— I don’t know about him good bad or otherwise but can say without a doubt that night he was really cool and made the guy from Japan’s year. The kid saw Frank and started fan boy talk like “he is my hero, wow Frank Shamrock”. I went over motioned to Frank and told him the guy was a big fan of his from Japan. Asked if he could say hi or grab a photo.

Frank jumped over the barrier fence talked to the guy, asked me if camera was ready. Did some cool stuff like picked the guy up for a picture. Took a few photos.

For years that classmate from Japan sent me a nice thank you letter about every year.

I just happened to go dig up one of the photos he sent of him and Frank from that night.

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We are trying to make every October release UFC 1 related

We got a solid line up so far

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Great episode! Just finished this one late but glad I checked it out

I was not really aware of David Isaacs role in the beginnings of the UFC and feel like the other maybe louder personalities in the early days over shadowed it or that maybe he didn’t want the spotlight or attention as much as they did.

Also it was eye opening hearing about Art Davie and him/UFC having such a contentious relationship and that he was let go as a result of some of it. Starting or helping another organization overseas secretly while being employed by the UFC and then even working against them after he left by trying to align with John McCain was disappointing to hear. But it’s all part of the story.

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That’s where we have to draw the line

I am super pro Art Davie, but we also can’t influence or edit the past; no matter how much it might hurt someone’s feelings.

What I try to do is not push back when things like this come up in conversation.

Art played his cards wrong…

The way he positioned himself as compared to everyone else, kept a lot of money from his pockets.

We have Charle Anzalone recording soon

  • my belief is that you will understand more afterward.

I thought the podcast was objective and respectful with it. It’s tough to hear sometimes but if it’s what happened then it is what it is and that’s what we are here for.

I’m looking forward to hearing Campbell McClaren and Rorion episodes someday to add even more insight to things we might not be aware of yet.

And fingers crossed for a John Milius episode lol

I thought Milius had a stroke, can he speak well enough now?
Good angle though, maybe somebody can speak for him or about him and his early day contributions?