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B.J. Penn says Nick Diaz fight was news to him, tried to get different opponent

When the UFC yanked Nick Diaz from the main event from UFC 137, replaced him with Carlos Condit, and then inserted the former Strikeforce welterweight champ into Condit’s place against B.J. Penn, the news caught a number of people off-guard including Penn himself.

The popular Hawaiian recently opened up about the situation in a video series through sponsor RVCA where he explained he was far from the first to know he was being slotted against Diaz.

“I’m in the middle of training camp,” Penn recalled thinking. “I’m up here in California training for the last 45 days, preparing for the fight, and they pulled a switch on me without even letting me know.”

After checking his bout agreement to make sure it was even legal to do, Penn said he spoke to Dana White and hammered out the specifics. However, that didn’t prevent the UFC icon from speaking with Diaz’s camp to see if there were any alternatives.

“We tried to get different fights, because I’ve trained with Nick Diaz – I’ve used him as a training partner before – and he’s a good buddy. We actually talk on the phone and hang out when we see each other,” Penn explained.

With Condit and Georges St. Pierre already locked up, and Jon Fitch’s health still uncertain, the two colorful competitors agreed it made sense for them to face off based on the divisional importance.

“We talked about it and we tried to find different opponents (but) at the end of the day there (aren’t) too many guys out there.”

PHOTO CREDIT – UFC

14 COMMENTS
  • fanoftna33 says:

    I love this attitude, they are friends and tried to fight others but when that failed they decided to go on with the show and go for it. Should be a seriously good fight and I am still very undecided on a winner but I am rooting for Diaz.

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  • stone says:

    This might be the toughest fight for me to watch…. Ever… These are my 2 favorite WWs of all time

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  • When nick beats Penn and Carlos beats gsp…then I’ll be in your position Stone.

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  • Richard Stabone says:

    Glad Dana pushed the issue with this and got this fight together after the initial Diaz fiasco.

    I wish this could be fought under the new 5-round main event rules (which would improve Diaz’s chances), but since that obviously doesn’t apply I can’t see BJ losing a 3-round fight with Diaz. Wouldn’t be shocked if Diaz pulls it out, but Penn would the best opponent he’s defeated during his career by a fairly wide margin.

    I don’t see either guy finishing the other. Should be a good scrap.

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  • Lord Faust says:

    The only way we don’t see a finish, is if Penn or Diaz end up in sufficiently dominant position that it affords them the ability to let them off the hook.

    Not that I know anything about such matters, but I figure bragging rights — at least as far as training goes — is on the line, and that’s not insignificant. Either Penn lays Diaz out in an exchange, or an accumulation of strikes stops Penn; one way or another, I think this will be a great fight to watch.

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  • BigDave says:

    Two losers fighting each other. This will be the fight that I go to the bathroom then grab a snack for the real fight. To say I hate the diaz brothers and whiny penn is an understatement. Penn is a crybaby bitch and nick diaz is about as dumb as a head of lettuce.

    Who wins this fight? who cares!

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  • MickeyC says:

    hey dave, you don’t know shit, this fights gona be awesome! Stop hate’n!

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  • Angry Mike says:

    I’m really looking forward to this one. They’re both good strikers and have good bjj. It’ll be a real contest either on their feet or on the ground.

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  • stone says:

    At the VERY least, this fight will be VERY entertaining…. How could anyone hate on that?

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  • Rece Rock says:

    Nick Diaz’ stock drops after this fight….Penn got this.

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  • MCM says:

    Diaz’s stock should have never been this high. But I agree that Penn will take this. BJ has that one punch KO power. Now Diaz has a hell of a chin, but he can be rocked pretty hard. The difference between BJ rocking him and someone like Semtex or K.J. is that Penn will use not only punches, but knees, elbows, and submission attempts all at the same time. BJ by TKO in the first.

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  • edub says:

    Both are two of my three favorite fighters (Robbie Lawler being the third).

    That being said Nick wins this. This was one of the only guys in the UFC’s top 7 or 8 WWs that he could maybe beat too (Condit being the other one). Diaz’s range will give him the edge in the striking, eventhough Penn will land some eye catching blows (early especially). His size will get him out of trouble when the fight hits the mat.

    In the end I see a great back and forth fight lean Nick’s way late as he turns on the pressure to win a decision or get a late stoppage in the third.

    If anyone gets up to walk away from this fight, they’re an idiot.

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  • Jmad says:

    BigDave is crazy, this should be a hell of a fight. I like both guys but have to pull for Penn.

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  • Guthookd says:

    They were going to eventually have to fight anyway so fuck it.

    I just hope neither of them holds back. If they don’t, it’ll be a hell of a fight.

    For the fist time in like a year I’m considering actually ordering the PPV at my house and paying for the shit.

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