T Nation



I'd like to take a quick survey about who you feel is the welterweight champion of the UFC. If we could keep this civil, that would be good.

Penn is, in my opinion, being that he beat Hughes and never was afforded the oppourtunity to defend his strap. A similar situation happened with Ortiz, and they gave Randy an interm title after he beat Liddel.

I feel Hughes should've been given the interm title and then they could've settled the dispute in the second match. It would've been a good match, I think. Unfortunatley, the UFC brass didn't favour Penn after their dispute and he got shafted.

Let's not even go into the fact that Penn is more well-rounded, and in my opinion, the champion should be the best of everything. That's of course just personal opinion. No disrespect to the monster wrestler Hughes. Yes, I love wrestling more than BJJ, btw.

On an interesting side note, if Penn were to ever fight in Pride, he mauled Gomi so he could justifiably be given a title shot at 161 lbs and that might just see Penn as the lightweight champ in Pride. That's just speculation, mind you.


How bout we just see what happens when he faces Spike's Georges St. Pierre


If you consider Penn the champ because he never lost to Hughes, then you'd have to say that GSP is the champ since he beat Penn (and Penn wore his belt to the cage).

Sorry bud, but I have to disagree, Hughes is the champ. Penn quit... right or wrong, he quit. Penn may be the best, but if he cannot bring 3 or 5 strong rounds in a row, he will never remain champ, if he is able to get there to begin with. It takes more than great technique to be a champion.


Penn and GSP already fought..


You could all justifiably call GSP the champ. Hell, he's Canadian just like me. I like GSP. Great wrestler, great BJJ. Humble and cool guy, so I hear.

Still, on a technicality, it wasn't a title shot for GSP so Penn is still champ. But again, GSP may be called the uncrowned champion. That was a war that could have been called either way.

GSP controlled but BJ busted his face up really good. Hell, GSP was at the hospital after and BJ just went back to the hotel or w/e. So, control versus damage it comes down to.

One thing I have noted, BJ never really gets beat up when he loses. Sure he gets out-worked or out-controlled etc but he never gets beat down. That's because of how good his control is in terms of grappling/wrestling/BJJ. That's just a side note.


"Control" - when is the UFC going to get away from lay n pray? Do the Gracies still have some say in management or something?


Control=safety. Safety=sanctioning from Nevada/California and hopefully other states. The UFC wants to be called legit sports even though it's really a fight. Football is a sport, soccer is a sport. Mixed martial arts/boxing/kickboxing are not sports in the conventional sense. Combat sports would be a more apt title.


They are all going to have to fight each other again to settle this.
I personally like BJ Penn more than Hughes or GSP. BJ Penn is so talented. Of course that isn't enough all the time. If Penn is focused and prepared I think he will beat everybody comfortably.


I agree totally.


This was the point of my previous post, Penn is most likely the best, but to stay champion he has to be able to stay focused. So far he has not been able to do it.

Hey, even GSP said Penn the was best welterweight around!


Nobody can beat BJ Penn except BJ Penn...and Fedor.


Hughes is the champ.

Penn walked away. He came back and lost to GSP. It doesn't matter how good he was or how good he could be if he was fit.

It doesn't matter that Penn beat Hughes.

Hughes is the champ until he walks away or someone takes it from him.


I know you weren't serious with that quote, but I understand what you are trying to say. While Penn did defeat Hughes, he lost to GSP, who lost to Hughes, so making any sort of statement proclaiming who would win out of these three is pretty much a crap-shoot, and in my opinion, could only be decided with an actual fight.

My reasoning comes from recently watching Hughes completely dominate the legend and "best jiu jitsu artist in the world..." Royce Gracie, on the ground none-the-less, to an easy TKO. He also, in his defeat of GSP, submitted him with an arm-bar, which I think further exemplifies Hughes' growing repetoire of skills while simultaneously quelling his critics proclaiming his "one-dimensional-ish" talents. With GSP, after his loss to Hughes, we see he has defeated Jason Miller, Trigg, Sherk, and Penn, all top notch welterweights. These victories do nothing but affirm that he is at the top of his game and it also reinforces my belief that Hughes, with his quick and impressive arm-bar submission of GSP who is otherwise immune to submissions, is at the top of his game as well.

I'm not saying Penn isn't as good as GSP or Hughes, I am simply saying that making an assumption or proclamation that Penn is the Champion and would easily defeat Hughes or beat GSP in a rematch is a little absurd, and the discussion itself is somewhat arbitrary.

Let the flaming begin,



I never made the assertation BJ Penn is unbeatable. I said Fedor could do it, did I not ?

Again, to use the GSP fight, after the fight did you see the pictures of GSP's face ? What about BJ post-fight ? GSP did a fantastic job of controlling BJ and took full advantage when BJ's mind went back to Hilo.

However, yet again I would like to refer to the damage done. If ever there was a time to call a draw, it was this match.


I'm confused. Of course Fedor could beat him. So could at least 10 other guys in higher weight classes simply because of size and strength differences when correlated to skill.

I thought you were just trying to make a point and didn't mean that literally, but I could be wrong.


who cares? it's only the UFC.


Royce Gracie is not recognized as the best jiu-jitsu practioner in the Gracie family, let alone the world. You guys who have only seen fights in North America need to get off of that legend.

I'm so tired of debating the GSP-Penn decision...to say GSP won is true only of the way the judges saw the fight...I don't know how anyone could truly have won that fight. They both got paid reasonably well for it so I suppose they were both winners...trying to justify GSP's rank in the welterweight division using that victory is also misleading because GSP did nothing more than sit on Penn, no way in hell he gets by like that against Hughes.


Penn was forced out by the UFC, he did not just walk away.


I don't think anybody was saying that Penn is the champ. I appreciate Penn's talent and his guts to fight anybody regardless of weight.
Hughes is the champion. Though bringing in his victory over Royce to prove a point is not convincing. Rather I think you are a victim of Dana White's propaganda. Royce could barely beat Hideo Tokoro. Though most people in America do not seem to know this. If you watched that fight you would not have thought Royce had a chance against Hughes.
I would like to see Penn fight GSP and Hughes again. He has the talent to beat those guys.If he comes in shape. Penn started at lightweight, and he has even fought Ryoto Machida(losing a decision) who comes in at 205. The same Machida who beat up Rich Franklin.


Why? Money? I don't know the whole story but the "forced out" stuff seems like his spin.

If he wanted to stay in the UFC he probably would have.

Can someone please post the whole story?