Former UFC lightweight champion Jens Pulver is grateful to finally be in the Hall of Fame.
‘Lil Evil’ is one of the unsung pioneers of the world’s leading MMA promotion. Making his debut at UFC 22 in 1999, Pulver quickly became one of the most entertaining lightweights on the planet. Within two years, he was seen as a potential future star for the promotion.
At UFC 30 in 2001, Pulver captured the UFC lightweight championship by defeating Caol Uno by unanimous decision. In the process, becoming the first 155-pound titleholder in the company’s history. He would later add title defenses over Dennis Hallman, as well as B.J. Penn. Following that victory over ‘the Prodigy’, he left the UFC due to a contract dispute.
Ultimately, Jens Pulver returned to the UFC years later, but his second stint was less successful. He would be knocked out by Joe Lauzon and submitted by the aforementioned Penn in their high-profile rematch. For years, that seemed to be it for Pulver in the UFC.
That was until UFC 284 last Saturday night. During the broadcast, it was announced that Pulver would be inducted into the Hall of Fame. During an appearance on The MMA Hour alongside Ariel Helwani, he discussed his reaction to the induction, and how emotional it was for him.
“It busted me up to look at my son [that] was it,” stated Jens Pulver discussing his reaction to his UFC Hall of Fame induction. “It’s ironic. I shot back to a moment when my dad had beaten me really bad and I was in tears. I remember just thinking to myself, crying in bed, and [thought] ‘One day when I have a son, I’m never going to treat him like this. He’ll never know what this is like, he’ll never know what this pain is like. He’ll never know what it is like to be afraid of his father and run when he is home.’
He continued, “And then all of a sudden, there’s my son, and it started hitting me. Like man, the tears are swelling up in my eyes right now. I got to ask him like, ‘Man, I hope you’re proud of your dad’, because I wasn’t proud of mine. It was huge [to me].”
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