Press Release: UFC & BAMMA USA in Exclusive Company
On Friday, July 13, 2012 in a ceremony during intermission of Badbeat 6 at the Commerce Casino (Commerce, CA), the fighter entrance door to the BAMMA USA cage was dedicated to Charles ‘Mask’ Lewis, one of the original founders of the TapouT apparel company. BAMMA USA in Exclusive Company Tim ‘Skyskrape’ Katz, another original founder of the TapouT apparel company, was on hand for the dedication ceremony. As ‘Skyscrape’ addressed the over-capacity crowd, he stated that this was “only the second organization” in the world to bestow such a “great honor” on their fallen friend ‘Mask’. In 2009, shortly after
Charles ‘Mask’ Lewis’ accidental death, the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) was the first MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) organization to perform the tribute. The UFC and BAMMA USA are the only two organizations worldwide who’s tribute is officially approved by the original ‘TapouT Crew’. BAMMA USA CEO Brett Robertsdescribed the ceremony as “the most meaningful time in my MMA career. (I am) honored and blessed to know ‘Skyskrape’ and ‘Punkass’ from TapouT.” Badbeat 6 was telecast live on the BAMMA USA New LiveStream channel to an estimated audience of over 100,000. Replays of the fights as well as the dedication ceremony are viewable by clicking the “Watch Badbeat 6 Replay” button on the BAMMA USA website homepage.
Charles David Lewis, Jr. is better known to millions by his nickname ‘Mask’. He excelled as a businessman, promoter and entertainer during his lifetime. ‘Mask’ was one of the original founders of the TapouT apparel company. In 1997, alongside his two friends ‘Skyskrape’ and ‘Punkass’, they began selling MMA apparel out of the back of their car at local shows. Within 10 years, the company reported revenues of over $22 million and within 2 years after that, it reported over $220 million in revenue. Well known in the MMA community, ‘Mask’ reached a much larger audience when the TapouT television series began airing in 2007. The reality show followed the TapouT Crew as they traveled the country looking for fighters to sponsor and promote their company. Charles’ accidental death in 2009 sent shockwaves throughout the sport. His contribution to the popularity of MMA was so significant that the UFC posthumously inducted ‘Mask’ into its Hall of Fame just months after his passing. To date, Charles ‘Mask’ Lewis remains the only non-fighter in the UFC Hall of Fame.