BJ Penn cries foul – But just needs to learn to admit defeat

First published in the Lethbridge College Endeavour, Feb. 4, 2009

Is anyone at all surprised that BJ Penn and camp are claiming foul after being embarrassed for 20 minutes in UFC ’94?

It was the most anticipated matchup in UFC history, with pay-per-view numbers to match, and it was supposed to be one of the greatest fights of all time; champion versus champion, stud versus stud.

What we saw was anything but.

Georges “Rush” St-Pierre dominated every aspect of the fight, picking Penn apart when they stood up, and made an example of the Hawaiian when it went to the mat.

After four rounds of taking a beating, Penn’s corner asked for the fight to be stopped.

Simply put, it was never close.

If you heard much from Penn leading up to the fight, however, you might have thought St-Pierre was going to need paramedics, if he survived the fight at all.

No microphone neared Penn’s mouth without the lightweight champion talking trash.

“I’m going to try and kill him,” Penn said. “He’s a quitter, and quitters are little (female dogs).” Trust me, that sounded tougher without the edit.

Anyway, Penn questioned everything about St-Pierre, from the French Canadian’s integrity, to his skill, even to his heritage.

Sadly, fans everywhere bought the talk, and many started saying St-Pierre looked frightened of Penn. If you saw the fight, you weren’t alone in wondering if it was Penn who was in fact scared.

Actually, he looked terrified. Even the Endeavour’s own Sean Young, who publicly claimed a Penn victory, sent me a text early in the fight. It looked something like this:

“BJ is done.”

On the other hand, Penn’s camp is nowhere near done. Penn’s corner now claims St-Pierre was “greased up” during the bout and that’s why the fight ended the way it did, and not the fact their boy wasn’t ready to serve St-Pierre a poutine, let alone a butt-whooping.

I thought it was disrespectful when St. Pierre was accused of being a quitter, but nothing compares to calling him a cheater. Even worse, they claim the so-called Vaseline crime occurred at ringside, in front of millions of witnesses. How stupid do they think St-Pierre is? Is he just going to decide, out of the blue, to openly cheat in his 20th fight?

Isn’t it possible that Penn’s camp, which isn’t exactly known for class, just can’t accept the fact St-Pierre is the superior warrior? When his opponents are mouthing off to the cameras about how badly they’ll beat him, St-Pierre is in a gym in Montreal fighting four or five guys in one afternoon, all of which outweigh him.

St-Pierre’s trainer puts him through hell during training and even admits to going out of his way to see his own fighter get knocked out.

By the time St-Pierre actually fights for real, his opponent is smaller and weaker than anyone he has faced in the months leading up.

Today the world should be wondering if St-Pierre is the best pound-for-pound fighter alive, or wondering if Rush could be the one guy that could stop middleweight champion Anderson Silva.

Instead, we have to sit through this nonsense about cheating because “someone” is a poor loser.

In the wake of this controversy, I would like to pass along a short message to Penn and company:

Quit acting like such a little (female dog).


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