Mailbag: St. Pierre's dominance, Carwin vs. Lesnar and more
Two-thirds of the way through a hectic 10-day stretch for the UFC, four names stand out:
Reaction to St. Pierre's win over
I'm inclined to agree with you: for the moment
If he fights the way he did against Hardy for the majority of his career -- and let's not forget GSP is just now entering his prime -- you're probably right. If the UFC can't make competitive fights for him, if he continues to wrestle first, then who knows how he'll be regarded. Dominant? Yes. Beloved? I don't think so. The best of all time? In MMA, that means you finish.
This is how lopsided St. Pierre-Hardy was according to the good people at CompuStrike:
• St. Pierre landed 130 of 187 punches compared to 22 of 59 from Hardy, none of which came while the Brit was standing.
• G.S.P went 6-6 on kicks, while Hardy landed a respectable 2 of 4.
• Takedowns were a farce. The champion scored on each of his nine attempts. Hardy didn't try one.
• And, based on something CompuStrike calls "dominant positions" -- which must be stuff like side-mount, mount and back-control -- St. Pierre bested Hardy 16-0.
Was Hardy unworthy, or is GSP that good?
Considering what "Rush" did to
I haven't seen anything from Daley that leads me to say yes. Daley, who trains with Hardy in the UK, has more pop and seems to be the better overall striker. But if he can't stay on his feet -- and he wouldn't be able to against St. Pierre -- those things don't matter much do they? Daley, also, isn't better at submission fighting than Hardy. GSP should be fighting
Let's see what happens with Thiago Alves. If the young Brazilian is cleared to fight again, and it sounds like that should happen, then the rematch with Fitch makes the most sense. Fitch-Almeida is fine, though it feels like a step back for the former Purdue wrestler.
The armbar switch from back-control is a classic move, the kind you try when you feel you can get away with anything against an opponent. St. Pierre had it figured even if he missed, he could immediately force Hardy to his back again. Which is what happened. So it was an attempt to finish, but I don't see it as particularly risky.
I tweeted during the fight that Carwin did to Mir on the feet what Lesnar did to Mir on the floor. Carwin planted Mir against the fence and worked the former UFC champion over on the inside. Instead of ground-and-pound it was stand-and-slam.
Since Lesnar-Carwin first seemed like a matchup worth noting, I predicted Lesnar would beat Carwin because he's the bigger, better athlete. People make the case that Lesnar hasn't fought anyone like Carwin. That cuts both ways.
As for Mir, he's at a crossroads. The former champion can continue to make money as a fighter. Maybe, since the UFC stubbornly refuses to put together
Two reporters I spoke with recently who are regularly credentialed to UFC and WEC events -- for point of clarity, I have not been since 2005 -- said they cannot pursue tough angles without fear of losing access.
That's just sad. On every conceivable level.
I would love the chance to interview Dana White. It's been a long time. He's welcome to come on my podcast whenever he wants for as long as he wants. The invite is out there.
Jones is a great talent and he puts people away, but I can't pick him to beat Lyoto Machida or Mauricio Rua right now. For one thing, Brandon Vera isn't as good as Machida or Rua, which makes it tough to extrapolate what Jones would do against a higher caliber of fighter. Jones will show what he's made of as he ups his competition. That's how it should work for a prospect of his talent. Dana White says three more fights and "Bones" is in the mix. That sounds about right.