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Ken Shamrock opens up about Kimbo Slice's constant 'battle with negativity' from critics

Kimbo Slice passed away yesterday (June 6, 2016) in his home state of Florida as a result of heart failure.

For more details on his death click here and here.

Slice made it onto the biggest stage mixed martial arts (MMA) has to offer with stints under the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and Bellator MMA banners in a rather non-traditional way, earning his share of the spotlight thanks to his backyard brawls throughout South Florida.

Still, despite his popularity and success, Ken Shamrock told TMZ Sports that Kimbo didn't always get the respect he truly deserved.

"I think what he was battling was negativity that he was always getting. Even when he won a fight it seemed like he was never good enough. As an athlete, if you've never really traveled that path, you don't understand it. But, when you really care about your fans and you really care about what you do then those things that come at you from a negative position ... it hurts ... especially when it comes in thousands of people with negative thoughts. It stings, it hurts. I know he was dealing with that. He never told me, never spoke in a conversation with him about it, but I could tell because I have gone through that with me fighting at my age. There are always people out there with negative things to say. They don't realize that it's like putting a bullet in a gun and pulling the trigger. It's not a good thing when it's constantly hammering somebody that is trying to be positive, trying to pull himself out of the world that he used to be in. And then when he gets there, it's no different than the world that he was in."

Though Slice may have had a few doubters and naysayers out there -- as is the case with most high-profile athletes -- no one could deny the star power his name carried, setting and breaking ratings records everywhere he went. In short, he was the undisputed ratings king.

Slice and Shamrock went toe-to-toe last year at Bellator 138, with Kimbo walking away with a first-round knockout victory over the former UFC, PRIDE and Bellator veteran.

Kimbo was 42 years old.

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