UFC 05 – Return of the Beast
UFC 05: The Return of the Beast was a mixed martial arts event held by the Ultimate Fighting Championship on April 7, 1995, at the Independence Arena in Charlotte, North Carolina. The event was seen live on pay per view in the United States, and later released on home video.
UFC 05 used an eight-man tournament format, with the winner receiving $50,000. The event also featured the first ever UFC Superfight, as well as two alternate fights, which were not shown on the live pay-per-view broadcast. The tournament had no weight classes, or weight limits. The fights had to end by knockout or submission; therefore no judges were used.
The Superfight match was the main attraction, and the winner of this fight would become the reigning UFC Champion. It consisted of rivals Royce Gracie and Ken Shamrock facing off in the most anticipated match in UFChistory to that date. Up to this point, Ken Shamrock’s only defeat in the UFC was to Royce Gracie in UFC 1.
UFC 5 was the first UFC event to feature any kind of time limits since UFC 1. A 20-minute time limit was imposed for the quarterfinal and semi-final round matches in the tournament. The finals of the tournament and the Superfight had a 30-minute time limit. The Superfight overran to 31 minutes before incorporating an on-the-spot decision to extend the fight by a further five minutes. As there was still no winner, the match was declared a draw. The referee for the night was ‘Big’ John McCarthy. Dan Severn won the tournament by defeating Dave Beneteau with a keylock finally.
This UFC event was the last with the involvement of Rorion Gracie, ostensibly because the introduction of new rules had diluted Gracie’s (and his family’s) vision for the UFC and vale tudo fighting. MMA Columnist Steve Cofield also noted that the Gracies left the UFC just as the talent level was beginning to increase. This is debatable, however, considering that many of the Gracies, including Royce, continued to fight in Japan against similar competition. Gracie and his partner Art Davie later sold WOW Promotions, co-promoters of the event, to WOW’s partner, Semaphore Entertainment Group. Royce Graciealso ended his involvement following Rorion’s departure, however Royce returned for UFC 60.
UFC 5 was generally well-praised. This event saw the implementation of a fight time limit in order to present the entire show in the allotted satellite time. The show ran 2 hours and 40 minutes, which was 40 minutes “over” the scheduled time, but UFC purchased 3 hours of satellite pay-per-view time in preparation. This was unlike UFC 4, where many PPV providers cut the show off after the first 2 hours.
With this event, many of the fighters received nicknames, including:
- Dan Severn – The Beast
- Oleg Taktarov – The Russian Bear
- Todd Medina – El Tiburon
- Joe Charles – The Ghetto Man
- Jon Hess – The Giant With an Attitude
|N/A||Ken Shamrock||vs.||Royce Gracie||Draw||36:06||[a]|
|N/A||Dan Severn||def.||Dave Beneteau||Submission (keylock)||3:01|
|N/A||Dave Beneteau||def.||Todd Medina||Submission (Strikes)||2:12||[b]|
|N/A||Dan Severn||def.||Oleg Taktarov||TKO (cut)||4:21|
|N/A||Jon Hess||def.||Andy Anderson||TKO (punches)||1:23|
|N/A||Todd Medina||def.||Larry Cureton||Submission (forearm choke)||2:55|
|N/A||Oleg Taktarov||def.||Ernie Verdicia||Submission (choke)||2:23|
|N/A||Dan Severn||def.||Joe Charles||Submission (rear-naked choke)||1:38|
|N/A||Dave Beneteau||def.||Asbel Cancio||TKO (punches)||0:21|
|N/A||Guy Mezger||def.||John Dowdy||TKO (punches)||2:02|
- Superfight Championship bout: Gracie and Shamrock fought to a draw after 36:00 because there were no judges, this was a new record length for a UFC fight.
- Beneteau replaced Jon Hess, who had broken his hand during his first match.