UFC 17 – Redemption
UFC 17: Redemption was a mixed martial arts event held by the Ultimate Fighting Championship on May 15, 1998 at the Mobile Civic Center, in Mobile, Alabama. The event was seen live on pay-per-view in the United States, and later released on home video.
The event featured a four-man Middleweight Tournament, three Heavyweight Superfights, an alternate bout in case of tournament injury, and a Heavyweight “exhibition” bout. A Middleweight Championship bout between Frank Shamrock and Jeremy Horn was also taped for broadcast on a later pay-per-view.
Several hours prior to the event, Olympic Gold medalist and UFC commentator Jeff Blatnick was introduced as the promotion’s commissioner in a meeting with the fighters to discuss the fight rules for the event. Blatnick asked at the meeting that the fighters refer to the sport, which at the time had many different names including the misnomer “No Holds Barred”, as Mixed Martial Arts, with the intention of improving the sport’s image. He then repeated the request to the media covering the event later that night. This is generally considered the first time the term Mixed Martial Arts was used to refer to the modern sport, and Blatnick is widely credited with coining the term in relation to it.
UFC 17 featured the first UFC appearance of both Dan Henderson and Carlos Newton, as well as the first MMA fight for Chuck Liddell.
The title Redemption refers to Mark Coleman’s return after losing the UFC Heavyweight Title to Maurice Smith at UFC 14. Coleman was originally slated to face then UFC Heavyweight Champion Randy Couture, who had to withdraw due to an injury. Lion’s Den fighter Pete Williams would step in as a last-minute replacement to face Coleman. Similar to his fight with Maurice, Coleman looked good early on in the fight, but when the fight went into an overtime round, Coleman appeared to be drained of energy, breathing heavily and keeping his arms low—even turning his back to Williams occasionally while standing. He took several hard shots from Williams, and was eventually knocked out by a devastating head kick Williams delivered to the face.
|Light Heavyweight Championship|
|Light Heavyweight||Frank Shamrock (c)||def.||Jeremy Horn||Submission (kneebar)||16:28||[a]|
|Heavyweight||Pete Williams||def.||Mark Coleman||KO (kick)||12:38|
|Heavyweight||David Abbott||def.||Hugo Duarte||TKO (punches)||0:43|
|Heavyweight||Mike Van Arsdale||def.||Joe Pardo||Submission (kimura)||11:01|
|Heavyweight||Andre Roberts||def.||Harry Moskowitz||KO (elbow)||3:15|
|Light Heavyweight bout|
|Light Heavyweight||Chuck Liddell||def.||Noe Hernandez||Unanimous decision||12:00|
|Middleweight Tournament Finals|
|Middleweight||Dan Henderson||def.||Carlos Newton||Split decision||15:00|
|Middleweight Tournament Semifinals|
|Middleweight||Dan Henderson||def.||Allan Goes||Unanimous decision||15:00|
|Middleweight||Carlos Newton||def.||Bob Gilstrap||Submission (triangle choke)||0:54|
- Shamrock defeated Horn to retain the Light Heavyweight Championship.