The thing about BJ Penn..he never evolved.

Discussion in 'UFC Discussion' started by TimeToTrain, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. TimeToTrain

    TimeToTrain Brown Belt

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    Looking back at his fights, he didn't really evolve as a fighter. And I'm just talking about technique here, leaving out his cardio and "motivation" for now. I was a fan of his back in the day, simply because the achievements he did especially getting his BJJ black belt at such a short time.

    But as far as MMA goes, he didn't transform into something bigger from when he first started until his last fight. Ok, after his fight with Din Thomas, his body type changed. He put on more natural weight and that's when he could jump from LW to WW to MW. After his first victory against Hughes, his fighting style just remained the same - box on the stand up, go for a takedown, if not, then he'll try to go for a sweep or a move to take his opponents back. And from there, try to go for an RNC.

    He had potential no doubt. From the looks of it, he also didn't strategize very well. It's like he didn't study his opponents or do his homework by looking at their previous fights. He did good against Diaz til he played Nick's game, got volume punched so many times and gassed. It's like Nick prepared for BJ, expecting an RNC attempt and that's what happened. Same with Jon Fitch.

    Frankie Edgar. I don't want to get started on this. The second fight, he had all the time to prepare for a rematch and he fought the exact same way as the first fight but did a lot worse. The third fight..he was even lucky to get a third match.

    Props for him taking the fight when Rory called him out..but, someone with that momentum, new type of breed of fighter, BJ goes ahead and fights his own same style that he's been doing since 2003, early 2004. As an undersized WW and disadvantaged with reach, I'm sure he could've made that fight a lot more competitive.

    BJ's mental game is tough no doubt. But it's too tough. Too tough to the point where he was stubborn to evolve as a fighter and keep up with the styles and hybrids of today. At best, his prime was beating up 2004 Matt Hughes, against Matt Hughes the third time who was already washed up and long past his prime, Sean Sherk who depended on PEDs to move far into his career, Renzo Gracie, and other has beens.
     
  2. RiotWyatt

    RiotWyatt Brown Belt

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    For someone who didn't acheive his "full potential", he sure did accomplish a lot.
     
  3. SideKickPro24

    SideKickPro24 Blue Belt

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    This. But also bj screwed himself by not fighting at LW. Honestly I think two years ago (around the time he fought Diaz) I could have seen him beating bendo, cerrone, Maynard. Edgar was and always will be just a terrible match up for him
     
  4. slavomir

    slavomir Purple Belt

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    Bj Penn's main issue was fighting at too many weight classes. Same as many pre modern era fighters.
     
  5. Davemeddlehed

    Davemeddlehed There's no mercy in this dojo!

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    I would disagree that he never evolved. Circa 2011ish we saw Penn landing takedowns on Jon Fitch and controlling him for a good portion of their fight. I do agree his standup never really transformed, but to be honest it didn't really have to. Some guys just never do develop extremely effective kicks. His boxing was some of the best if not the best in the sport for a long time. I won't go making excuses like "motivated" and such. I do think he could have been better if he was as devoted to training as he was to fighting for the duration of his career. Let's be honest, the BJ Penn who destroyed Florian, Diego, and Sherk could hold his own even today. The skill set he had was incredible for it's time, it's just too bad he, like Rampage, hated everything that precedes a fight. I think Penn was one of the few fighters who was already near his "ceiling" when he entered the sport. He didn't necessarily take on a whole lot of new skills because where most fighters enter with one specialty and end up having to basically learn from scratch at least one area of the game, he was already well rounded at a time where not alot of fighters were.
     
  6. Maori

    Maori Brown Belt

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    No shit sherlock
     
  7. DuncanFan819

    DuncanFan819 Purple Belt

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    BJ was like the Shaq of MMA. An all-time great who accomplished a ton and was immensely talented but just didn't give it that extra 10% that might have made him even better.

    Regardless, Penn was still superhuman and 99.9999999999% of fighters would kill for his career.
     
  8. NotImpressbyp

    NotImpressbyp Orange Belt

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    He also wasn't mentally strong. There isn't a single fight in which he lost a round and came back to win the fight. If it's not 100% domination, it's a loss. He's still my favorite fighter though
     
  9. BigGucciSosa

    BigGucciSosa Red Belt

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    He's not Squirtle bruh
     
  10. MMun

    MMun Black Belt

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    Jon Fitch seemed very surprised that BJ's gameplan was to wrestle with him.
     
  11. BROWNPRIDE

    BROWNPRIDE Red Belt

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    I have been saying this for years he should of never fought at ww
     
  12. Koimpact

    Koimpact Brown Belt

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    Because there was a time when it was an incredible achievement to take BJ down. That's why he didn't have to evolve. His amazing striking and submission skills coupled with his ridiculous TDD was a dangerous combination against anyone.
     
  13. Cyantist

    Cyantist Red Belt

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    Doesn't help that his knees started to go at a young age. He just didn't have that flexibility anymore.
     
  14. Lavos

    Lavos <img src="http://i.imgur.com/WS3eKt2.png">

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  15. raaju

    raaju Double Yellow Card Double Yellow Card

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    in his defence, by his final fight, he had implemented ballet into his game. if that ain't transformation i dunno what is
     
  16. Exarch01

    Exarch01 Blue Belt

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    I don't know if I would call it evolution, but Penn definitely improved his game after his losses to Pulver and Hughes.
     
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2015
  17. tasticles

    tasticles Red Belt

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    your whole post is ass backwards. He was mentally weak not strong and he did evolve as a fighter. His boxing got leaps and bounds better, his bjj improved and his defensive wrestling. He folded under pressure a lot of times and he wouldn't train worth a shit usually. not a mentally strong fighter
     
  18. TimeToTrain

    TimeToTrain Brown Belt

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    He has that Mousasi look there.
     
  19. SherdogGoat

    SherdogGoat Platinum & Braco Belt Banned

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    Last time I saw him fight, he had evolved into a kangaroo.
     
  20. tenniswhiz

    tenniswhiz Steel Belt

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    That's kind of true.
    I could always tell if he was going to win or lose quite early in the fight; sometimes he appeared to simply give up.
     

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