New England’s Biggest heel

| January 29, 2015 | 25 Comments

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We have had to endure some of the worst people the sport could find over the years. Whether they be promoters, fighters, officials, commissioners, you name it. We have had quite the history in New England for some of the biggest frauds in all MMA. Who has been the biggest one?


[socialpoll id=”2250009″]



Category: 3Col, Poll

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  1. Ebon Talifarro | February 19, 2015
  1. Dan Bonnell says:

    You can add your own vote by typing the name in “other” and clicking enter.
    Ive just added Dilorenzo.

  2. Tony Clifton says:

    Andy Kaufman is the biggest fraud out there! He’s a bum! You here me Andy? You’re a bum!

  3. Biggie says:

    Bower raped a bunch of underage boys. How he doesn’t win this is mind-boggling.

  4. Dan Bonnell says:

    I posted the poll as the opposite of the previous one.
    Apparently Mike Hammersmith was so hurt that he saw Dave Spero up there he left MassMMA. I don’t really care. The hundred phone calls I got yesterday assured me it was the right thing and they were happy to see him go. A lot of people didn’t like his view because he hadn’t any background in the sport and his writing caused some fights not to materialize because he made guys sound like killers in their debut. The most damaging stuff was that he solicited money to write articles and that was precisely why I left Denny and brought MassMMA back. I spoke to Hammersmith about it and told him we don’t ask for payment here. He also almost ruined a relationship w NEF when he bitched about his press seat being to far away. I can’t have that shit but I like the diversity of the writers I have here so I kept him. He felt that because I added Spero to the above list it made things personal and that I am advertantly slandering his name and ruining his business. So he left.

    He now wants to start a new website with Dave Spero. Two guys without credibility from the sport writing for a sport they know nothing about other than they’ve read here on this site. Make a copycat site. They will see how much effort I put into this site day in and day out. Make rankings, do it all.

    Hammersmith has become the modern era Giant lee. He and Dave don’t even know who that is.
    Hammersmith claims he has fought, where? Show us? Says he fought underground and he was Independant and real teams wouldn’t allow him to rain because he is ruthless. Does he look ruthless to you? He also claims to be an international gaming and handicapper.

    And finally, he doesn’t use his true name. He isn’t mike. He is Sean Rafferty. Who at this level really uses a fake name.

  5. Sean Rafferty says:

    Cast a vote for Rafferty I shall, for if he winnith the coveted heel award, by many he will be known! THUG LIFE!!!

  6. Dan Bonnell says:

    And to be fair, I threw my own name up here yesterday to divert all the negative attention from the precious.

  7. Mike Hammersmith says:

    On my way to CZ so will do this quickly:

    Background in the sport: I’ve been a fan since UFC 1 and involved in martial arts longer than that. I’ve never fought MMA as a sanctioned sport, and my primary background is American Kenpo. My older brother, Ian Rafferty, is the AKKI rep. for NH and has been for over a decade. Nuri Shakir knows him and knows me as well if you need to verify I know some kind of martial art for your approval. You can ask pretty much any gym owner what I bring to the table in a martial standpoint as I’ve spent mat time all over the place. I’ll never claim to be good at anything, but to say I have no background is silly and erroneous.

    Soliciting money: I’ve written pieces for gyms and was compensated for my travel and time. Every gym was well aware of what they were paying for and what they received. These pieces were hosted on Mass MMA but pushed via social media, which is the point of the marketing (your new students are generally friends of current students). They’re paying for a quality piece written to highlight aspects of their school from a marketing standpoint and get their name out there. You yourself knew of this and were fine with it.

    Promotions well outside my area (I live in Hudson, NH) are asked to pay me for my time for event previews if I’m unable to attend, or to get me out of work early to cover the post-fight. I’ve also done commissioned pieces for every organization in the area when requested, website content, internal letters, etc. If someone is asking me to give my time to help them sell tickets or promote an event, it’s well within my rights to request payment for that time. No one has a problem with it.

    Cancelled fights: That happened once, and if someone was scared out of a bout because I talked up their opponent, they were finding a way out anyways. My writing style elevates fighters and points out their strong suits, which is why they’re popular on social media. No one wants to pass around a piece to their friends and family that talk about their horrendous takedown defense or thirty second gas tank. Anyone can point out flaws and it serves no purpose.

    NEF: They stuck me in a bird-shit filled media box after I spent 20 hours on pre-fight interviews and articles, because I was working for a rival promotion. It was a petty move on their part and I decide I didn’t want to be involved with them, which was spoke of only on my own social media page and not Mass MMA.

    Fought: Besides karate tournaments, I competed for the McBane Cup with The Cateran Society Broadsword Academy in Portland, Maine in 2009-2010. I came in 98th in the country. I also fought Vale Tudo in Townsend, Montana 2004-2007. I went 6-5. It was unregulated and while there was video online at one point, it’s gone. If you REALLY care I’ll give you a few phone numbers of guys that beat the shit out of me and they’ll tell you all about it. I’ll never claim I was any good at it, but I did fight. Not sure where you got the “ruthless” thing from, other than an article I wrote years ago about techniques that are legal in MMA that no one uses. I’m from a self-defense background first and foremost. I did a short seminar at Keegan Hornstra’s school about it.

    International betting handicapper: Talk to Joey Oddessa if you want to know about my involvement. If you don’t know who that is, you don’t know anything about sports betting. Feel free to google “mike hammersmith betting MMA” and you’ll find years worth of articles and podcasts dealing with sports betting.

    Pen name: Yeah, I use a pen name. Partially because I was under contract with a defunct MMA site years back under my real name and started with another with a pen name. When I started bouncing around from place to place I kept it because it made it easier for people to find me. Nothing devious, it just ended up having history attached to it.

  8. Dan Bonnell says:

    You Son of a bitch,

    Ive had every promoter call me about you. They tell me you solicit them for money to write reviews, previews, articles and interviews to boost their promotion. Your a fuckin scumbag. Ive been writing for this site for ten years and never asked anyone for a dime for the articles i write, interviews etc. I do it to build the sport. Its my hobby. You disgust me for asking My friends for money to write articles on my site. MassMMA isnt looking for a buck. You can’t solicit money from Gym owners either and promise them that the article will reach our readers here and use MassMMA as your pitch to them to pay you your fee. Thats dirty. If Nick Mahmood and i dont make money on this site, you sure as fuck wont make any off our hard work.
    MMA doesnt make any of us money and i consider every person in this community that pushes the sport in the right direction a friend. Asking any of us for money is absurd, no one, no promoter, no gym, no matchmaker, no fighter makes any real money off MMA unless they’re Joe Lauzon, and even Joe will tell you he spends 20 grand on plane tickets a year just so his friends can come to his fights.
    You are an asshole and the more you talk the more it bleeds your bullshit. You just want attention. You just texted me asking to finish up one last article for Combat Zone before you leave and start your own thing. Are you serious? You want to scum off us one last time to get a free front row seat so you can write on Facebook?
    Youve used MassMMA for the last time dude. Anyone that allows you to write for them or is proud to have a scumbag like you around means nothing to me. I am ashamed to admit that i kept you around and stuck up for you when no one else could stand you.

  9. Mike Hammersmith says:

    Simply not true. I’ve had exactly one promoter pay me for preview/reviews because I was out of the state and had to drive back to my business to access internet to write them. They paid me happily because they use my work to make their programs. Again, I’ve talked to others about previews/reviews/interviews that were too far for me to reasonably travel. I put upwards of 30 hours into an event overall and can’t justify the time if the promotion is also several hours from my house or business. I do PLENTY for free but do draw a line in some aspects where it will cut heavily into my free time. I’ve never exploited anyone, but offered professional quality writing at a frankly cut-rate price. I’ve even had promoters tell me I should charge more than I do for press releases, etc These people whom you claim hate me for it continue to ask me for my work and pay me, so apparently only one of us has the truth of the matter.

    As for the gym owners, again, the gym write-ups needed a URL and were pushed via facebook, not Mass MMA. You were aware of this and even talked to a gym owner friend of yours about doing it. I’ve also done this service for free for some gyms that were in dire straights at the time. One of the gyms I covered was eight hours from my house, so charging $50 isn’t exactly a wild cash grab on my part. Considering I have excellent relationships with these gyms, you must again be confused about their loathing.

    Promoters pay for talent, from ring girls, to announcers, to house bands, to techs. I’m a talented writer and some promotions will pay me for specialized work that has literally nothing to do with Mass MMA and everything to do with having a skill that’s in demand. I’ve never needed Mass MMA to open a single door for me, but rather showed the quality of my handicraft and put in some time for people.

    Here’s the beautiful thing though. If I’m truly this scumbag thieving monster that you allowed in your midst for so long, I’ll be gone before you know it because you have withdrawn your support. If I’m actually a genuine person, sports fan, and writer, nothing at all will happen and I’ll continue to do what I love. Much like how combat brings out the truth in all of us, the truth of people will be revealed from here on out.

    I’m not worried.

  10. Dave Spero says:

    I wish you would stick up for me Dan. the time I walked in the Boston brawler told you I was praying for your boy when he was in the hospital. Or how about the time you came to my school to talk about your problems with your wife. I was under the impression we had squash all beef after that.unfortunately it’s not you its her that can’t let s*** go. by the way giantl lee what some other kids from the original mass amma that would say stupid s*** along with biggie and the other idiots. I’ve been around the sport plenty and when I sit fireside, people hear the real story and how much of a dbag you are and what really happened with Lauren, I won’t look so bad. don’t kick a sleeping f****** dogyou should have learned that as a child.

  11. lauren bonnell says:

    ***round of applause***
    Dave. Thank you for bringing my name into something I have not had anything to do with and had nothing to say about. BUT since you want to involve me in your petty bitch fight, then just let me know when you are heading down to mulligans for a fireside chat… maybe we can carpool?? I mean…. I can sling mud just as far as you if you wanna get dirty. 😉 you should really consider who you want to pick fights with when you have ZERO facts. I have nothing to do with your beef with DaN. I mean, what’s this the second time ever in my life I have even posted on mass mma? I have My own hobbies honesty, and believe me you are not a person that I would waste my time on. your post was actually brought to my attention by someone else otherwise I wouldn’t have ever seen it. I MIND MY BUSINESS. MAYBE YOU SHOULD MIND YOURS….

  12. Dave Spero says:

    Ya I just talked with Dan. He got the best of me on this this post and got under my skin. My apologies.

  13. Deez Nuts says:

    Thank you Sir Hammersmith for giving enough details that I was able to find some of your fight footage! You are right, not the best performance, but I’ll give you credit for getting in there. Best of luck in your future endeavors.

  14. Deez Nuts says:

    That McBane Cup is no joke either!

  15. Deez Nuts says:

    glad to see that Dave and Dan have apparently talked and worked it out. It’s weird how people seem to just show up in this sport out of nowhere, stir up all kinds of shit, then disappear. Pretty much every single guy on that list with the exception of Dave and Dan fits that mold. You’d think that, in this day, people would realize that they can’t make shit up and get away with it, but they still do. Hopefully Sir Hammersmith, or Lord Rafferty, or King Full of SHit, or whatever he goes by will go back offshore with Joey Odessa and let things get back to normal.

  16. McGreevey says:

    Fake name? People actually do that? That’s just weird.

  17. Kelly Mac says:

    Im so confused….do i vote for Aza Zorn or Pete DiLorenzo? Either way, this whole pole and comments have made my night. Thanks Dan!

  18. Sean Seaberg says:

    For the record. In my 15 or so months at Speros he repeatedly would talk about Lauren and Dan to myself and students for literally no reason. He would bring Lauren up far too much considering he was married and she was just an ex of his.

    I brought up some of this stuff up before on here and Dave’s consistently shown me the pattern of what Bonnell had described to me previous to my actually working ( I use that term loosely since it was more about training with my actual friends and using his facility.) with him.

    I tried to give him the benefit of the doubt to see if he was actually the shitbag more than a couple people had suggested. Turns out he was even more odd, distracted, and unprofessional as previously advertised to me.

    Dave talk shit about all his exes publically and to his students. His wife came and saw me before his fight with me to thank me for saying all the things I was telling everyone, which confirmed to me I was in fact doing the right thing. Had I 1-2 more fights before and be a little less sick (Cold/Flu) I’m confident I would have been more calm and won against Dave. That’s all besides the point and I really don’t care. I’ll keep doing my thing and he can retire on that lol.

    Dave continues to lie to people about me when I have no concern of him at all. He’s still a chump to me. I tried to be cool with him after and he’s up his own ass and still trying to play MMA politics because he cares so much how he’s viewed in the local MMA scene apparently more than anything. I thought he was running a BJJ Gym, but that’s none of my business.

    Bottom line. If Dave is nice to you and is dick riding it’s because he most likely wants something from you. We all want things, but I just know he’s not trustworthy personally and had no reason to lie to or about me when I was there for not even a year. The whole thing was just strange. I’m glad I got to meet some good guys at his place and work with my friends, but I’m so glad I don’t have to witness the mess that is him anymore.

    Soliciting sex from members and staff is just shitty in my opinion. These people join to learn, grow, and follow real leadership. Not to be used and manipulated. I won’t publically repeat all the things I’ve heard girls say to myself and others. Good luck everyone!

    Let’s all focus on progress and improving. Let’s not be shitbags ok because there’s enough of those in the world. Let’s use any power that we have to help people up in life. Integrity is very important. Take your dignity and use it to propel others around you, especially if it means they may surpass you someday. Boom!

    • Sean Seaberg says:

      I wish there was an edit button here so I could fix punctuation and structure.

      • Eric says:

        i caught Dave after he was done with class for his challenge. he declined and told his wife to get a gun and call the cops. one thing to remember about fighting is, and this is patent pending trademark, “If it ain’t raw it ain’t real”! i don’t know why fighter don’t throw caution to the wind like a kamikaze. do you really, and not you in particular, but modern day fighters, think that you are going to become the next Iceman or Royce? the most important part about the Arlington national cemetery is the tomb of the unknown soldier. is there something to gain at the end? i still say that the announcer has the best job in the place. one more thing, vote yes on the trains, so they can start building bullet trains. bullet trains the future of America. get there faster!

  19. Ross T. says:

    Jake Burke
    Owner of Burkes Martial Arts
    I nominate him because he claims he fought in Thailand but no video or pictures? really in the Iphone age?
    And he has the biggest ego of any gym owner I know… thinks his shit don’t stink!!

  20. Mrs B. says:

    I’ll second that nomination for Jake Burke / Burkes Martial Arts !
    2 words : Total Creep !!
    Signed up for his Atomic Kickboxing classes , tried to screw me on the contract & then harrased the heck out of me to go on a date with him …
    Never went back after two classes ..

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