Don Frye is a legend. Frye was one of the first to use ‘mixed’ in his martial arts. I wore out the VHS tape from years of use, watching ‘The Predator’ win the UFC 8 tournament . Frye finished every opponent on his way to becoming the tournament champion. After the UFC ban in America, Don Frye went to Japan and fought in Pride. His rivalry with Ken Shamrock and a ‘fight of the millennium’ with Takayama, propelled his status to living legend.
As his martial arts career began to wind down, his pro wrestling in Japan and acting career began to flourish.
Frye became that MMA guy who crossed over to the mainstream. Granted, his imdb page reads like a Gene LeBell profile. His role’s included ‘Grizzled Man’, ‘Handler #1’, ‘Wrestling Opponent’… You get the gist of it. The deep Sam Elliott voice and the Tombstone mustache, made him easy to cast.
The hardcore MMA fans who were there at the beginning, stuck with Frye through the years. His ‘I don’t give a shit’ attitude and hilarious personality resonated with people. Don began his own fight predictions videos. His humor and raspy voice were a great combo in his ‘Predator Predictions’.
Some of the world’s biggest icons were taken from us in 2016. Don Frye was almost one of them. After initially going in to the hospital to deal with back pain, he had a brain hemorrhage. Frye was put in a medically induced coma. Frye developed pneumonia in his comatose state. The Predator was out cold and his body fought for it’s life. He was in the hospital for 3 months.
In typical Don Frye fashion, he just rubbed some dirt on it and began his recovery. He took to his Facebook this morning and posted his thoughts on his 3 month tko over the Grim reaper.
“My record officially improved to 22-9. Death took a lot of people in 2016. He tried twice with me and failed both times. I’m not going anywhere. How’s that for a Predator Prediction?”
Never change, Don Frye.