Tim Kennedy served with distinction in the US Army while still being an active professional MMA fighter. Thus it was little surprise that fans got behind him during his fights, as he recorded some impressive wins. However, that sentiment may have taken a hit. Donald Cerrone recently shared a story from his days training with former UFC middleweight, Kennedy, at the ‘JacksonWink MMA Academy,’ that hasn’t sat well with the fans.

In a video shared on X by the MMA Mania account, ‘Cowboy’ began his story by stating, “My favorite thing about Tim Kennedy is he’s like as American as apple pie. So we’re at Jacksons and any of the Russian/Muslim fighters would come in, ol’ Timmy would take it upon himself to just takedown, smother, and absolutely destroy these dudes.”

Later in the video, he also described how Kennedy, who competed at 185 lbs in his UFC career, would dominate the physically imposing Russian fighters and revealed that, “He’d smile and laugh and just rub their face on the mat, like just doing malicious sh*t…”


Article continues below this ad

‘Cowboy’ further went on to reveal that since he was a lightweight, he’d be enjoying himself on the sidelines while this was happening and that, “…he’d just annihilate them and I loved it.” Cerrone also stated that the sessions would usually end with both of them talking about how much they “hate” the Russians and he personally couldn’t have done what Kennedy did due to the size difference between the two.

As for Kennedy, he became a Green Beret after he decided to join the forces following 9/11. He enlisted in 2001 and was deployed in Iraq in 2006. He also registered a professional MMA win in 2006, after a period of inactivity that started in February 2003. In 2007, he fought 4 times, winning three of those bouts. He holds wins over the likes of Robbie Lawler and Michael Bisping. Before coming to UFC, he also competed in Strikeforce and was also inducted in the International Sports Hall of Fame in 2019.

During his time with the military, he rose to the level of master sergeant and was awarded the Bronze Star medal by the American government. But this stellar record and personal history did not excuse him from the ire of the fans.

Cerrone’s story has drawn considerable backlash from the MMA fandom, who responded to the video by lashing out at Cerrone and Kennedy for their accomplishments. They accused them of being “jealous” of the dominance that Russian fighters have displayed in the UFC. Here’s a look at what the fandom had to say.

“Never sniffed a belt,” Donald Cerrone and Tim Kennedy slammed for their unwarranted “hate” against Russian fighters

Fans pointed out that with Russian fighters like Khabib Nurmagomedov and Islam Makhachev, dominating the UFC, Tim Kennedy and Donald Cerrone would likely be frustrated at MMA’s current landscape. One fan wrote, “If you add all Dagestan/Chechen Fighters in UFC One PFL and Bellator combined losses compare it with this Unknown Hillbilly this Hillbilly will have more L. He is just jealous.”

Looking at the win-loss records of many Dagestani fighters highlights their dominance inside the octagon. Said Nurmagomedov has a 18-3 record in the bantamweight division, Umar Nurmagomedov has a flawless 17-0 record in the same division. His brother Usman boasts an identical record in the lightweight division.

Talking about lightweight, UFC fans are well aware of Khabib’s undefeated streak of 29-0 while his disciple Islam Makhachev went 26-1 after his recent win over Dustin Poirier at UFC 302.

As such, an X user brought up Kennedy’s (18-6) and Cerrone (36-17) MMA careers as a response to their statements. They opined that neither of them ever managed to reach the heights of skill the Dagestani camp has demonstrated inside the octagon. The comment read, “Both kenedy and cowboy are bums in mma, lbh, skill wise nowhere near the Dagestanis.”

An alternate scenario was also brought up by a fan who speculated how different the UFC’s “timeline” would look if Nurmagomedov and his team went to Jackson Wink MMA instead of ending up in AKA with coach Javier Mendez – “How cleansed the timeline would have been if Khabib and his band of Russians went to Jacksonwink instead.” This would have been monumental as it would have put ‘The Eagle’ under the same roof as his GOAT status contender Jon Jones. Also, to see Khabib go up against Cerrone would have made for an interesting battle.

Another fan brought up Cerrone’s fight against Conor McGregor from UFC 246 in 2020 when he was stopped just 40 seconds in the very first round: “Isn’t this the same guy who quit like a bi*ch against Conor.”


Article continues below this ad

Others pointed to the fact that while Cerrone never won a lightweight title in the UFC, the Dagestani camp has been at the top of the division, first with Nurmagomedov and now with Makhachev firmly cementing their place as champions. Both of them have three lightweight title defenses under their belt so far, with Islam angling for a second belt in the near future – “Sure, buddy. That’s why they’ve dominated your division for the past decade, and you’ve never sniffed a belt.”

Fans also slammed Kennedy for his “hate” for the Russians as they pointed out that he was unable to translate his ‘dominance’ in the gym to the Octagon as he never held the UFC middleweight title – “timmy couldn’t do any of that for a belt tho.” Kennedy fought five times under the UFC banner, winning only 3, and losing both of his fights via finishes.

The US veteran was undefeated in his WEC days but lost twice in the UFC and Strikeforce, and once each in the IFL and the regional circuits.


Article continues below this ad

In conclusion, the story shared by Donald Cerrone not only brought to light his and Tim Kennedy’s questionable behavior but also highlighted the ongoing dominance and respect commanded by Russian fighters in the UFC. Fans were quick to voice their disapproval as they pointed out the stark contrast between Kennedy’s and Cerrone’s actions and the achievements of the fighters they targeted, emphasizing the former’s lack of success in comparison.

What are your thoughts on Donald Cerrone’s story and Tim Kennedy’s behavior towards Russian fighters? Share them with us in the comments below!