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Carlos Condit Says Johny Hendricks Has a “Puncher’s Chance” to Beat Georges St-Pierre

Posted on by Jeff Cain

Carlos Condit at UFC 143 press conferenceUFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre puts his title on the line against top contender Johny Hendricks at UFC 167 on Nov. 16 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

Former UFC welterweight interim titleholder Carlos Condit has fought both St-Pierre and Hendricks and was asked his opinion on the title bout during a recent edition of UFC Tonight.

“I think Johny Hendricks has a puncher’s chance,” said Condit.  “He’s obviously a big puncher.  He’s got the power to make it a short night for GSP, but I feel like GSP is going to out-technique Johny Hendricks.”

It’s sometimes forgotten that St-Pierre comes from a striking background.  His karate base has been expanded with additions of possibly the best wrestling in mixed martial arts as well as a strong technical boxing game.

He has an effective jab, but has largely become a point striker.  Hendricks knocks people out.  Half of his wins have come by knockout, while St-Pierre has not finished an opponent since 2009.  Few would disagree that St-Pierre has the more versatile striking arsenal and is the more technical striker between the two, but Hendricks’ punching power makes him a more dangerous striker.

While Hendricks has the advantage in punching power, Condit believes it will be St-Pierre’s wrestling that will be the determining factor in the fight.

“I think his wrestling, and I’m not an expert on wrestling, but I think his wrestling is going to make the difference and Georges is going to be able to take him down and control the fight,” he said.

St-Pierre is widely regarded as having some of the best wrestling in the sport.  He’s adapted to grappling like a chameleon to its background, but Hendricks has the better wrestling credentials on paper.

A two-time NCAA wrestling champion and four-time NCAA wrestling All-American, Hendricks may pose the greatest threat to St-Pierre’s wrestling dominance in the welterweight division.

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  • Flutie

    Another dominate GSP performance in order!

    • claudale

      I hope that’s sarcasm. He doesn’t even try and finish anyone anymore; it’s all about avoiding punishment and scoring points. He couldn’t finish Diaz or Hardy? Come on.

      And since he has a fanatical fan base, Dana won’t erupt like he does when other people are involved in a boring fight.

      GSP doesn’t want to be on the receiving end of KO of the night. He’ll dance backwards and throw jabs from far away, late in the round he will look to land a takedown to score points (not to get a GNP going).

      I don’t think he’s going to try and outwrestle Hendricks, just jabs. Only way he dominates hendricks is if hendricks gases (which is possible)

      I think Johnny is working on his wrestling, learning from other wrestlers who took GSP’s for granted (Hughes and Koscheck). But I see this being a boring standup fight.

      • Lucas Freire

        I just love it.
        How wouldn’t it be a dominant performance from GSP? He wouldn’t get hit, wouldn’t get KOed, wouldn’t get taken down, and would deliver all the punishment on Hendricks.
        But hey, your post makes me wonder how he’s still the champ, you’re not a professional trainer or UFC top fighter, yet you decrypted GSP’s style so easily… he’s just so predictable, right?
        That’s the problem when it comes to GSP, your only guarantee is that he’s gonna do the opposite of what you want him to.
        You’re a grappler? He’ll outstrike you the whole match
        You’re a striker? He’ll take you down infinite times and wear you out till you can’t even put your arms up.
        But I guess being so versatile at such a high level for such a long time doesn’t mean nothing.
        While I agree that he doesn’t try to finish anyone, I think there’s more to lose for him than for us, who analyse it simply by looking at the entertainment perspective. For us it’s a show, for him it’s a job, a job where everyone tries to take his place.

        • Ian Price

          Well said. I think he could get more finishes, but that would be at the expense of occasional losses. At this point, he’s so close to setting all these records, he doesn’t want to get Weidman ‘ ed

        • deepgrim

          agreed, he would be a nightmare to prepare for, hes striking is very versatile between kicks and punches and the fact that he can take you down at any moment and control you for a full round means you have to be so carefull with wat shots you fire back, same problem when you would face the likes of cain velasque.

          feel like hendricks would need a quick ko before gsp finds rythem but i quess ya never know, its the reason we all watch right?

    • Neo34

      I have to agree with Lucas on this one. GSP never gets owned in any round in any fight. If it was so easy to predict his methods he would have never had the belt this long. I remember when GSP fought matt hughes for the third time. Remember how dominate hughes was for so long? When asked how he was going to defeat GSP in there 3rd fight his reply was very telling.”im not sure” he said “I just believe im going to win”. When i heard him say that i knew that not even the great matt hughes had an answer for this problem and he knew it! Still seems to be the same problem for every fighter GSP fights. They really dont know how to beat him. The problem is not with George its with his opponents. They are the ones who claim george is gun shy and afraid to get hit but i havent seen one yet excited about going after george to prove it. Hendricks says hes going to knock him out. you know how many time ive heard that? Has anyone considered that GSP has like a eight inch reach advantage on him. they dont usually tell you that before the fight. Alves said the same thing so did hardy and KOS. all of them suppose to be able to solve the great GSP problem. None of them able. Same story, different fight.

      • deepgrim

        well as condit says he obviously has a punchers chance espicially as he can end a fight with one punch- the problem been finding it, gsp stand up is way stronger and more versiatile. Think hendricks would be able to score a takedown too, but i dont think he would be able to control gsp on the ground, whereas gsp can control just about anyone.
        Cant see anything but a gsp win but when you have a big puncher like hendricks much like jds v cain in the first fight- it can be a very short night

  • Truth

    yes Hendricks has the power, but his reach is pretty short. GSP should have the footwork and quickness to stay out of range.

    • Correction

      Reach is just a tool and if it isn’t used right then it doesn’t matter. They have both trained with the same reach for years so it isn’t like it actually effects anything at all. Reach is just something that is mentioned, any standup fighter knows that it means nothing unless someone is good at using it as a part of there style.

      • Braeden

        But their style is affected by their reach. examples: Jon Jones, Carlos Condit, etc.
        All parts of the fighter affect their style, from their reach to their body type to their centre of gravity.

      • MadDog

        This is one of the wiser comments I’ve read in a long time.

      • Jason

        No it isnt. That is like saying a 7 foot center and 6’4” SG have practiced/trained at the same height for years so height doesn’t matter. It does matter.

      • MMAMA

        “They have both trained with the same reach for years so it isn’t like it actually effects anything at all.” Wrong. It effects the standing distance two fighters wait at when not exchanging. GSP will want a bigger gap, because he has the longer reach, so Hendricks will have to come into GSPs reach to strike him, where as GSP can strike Hendricks without risking a counter punch. Reach is one of the single most important aspects in any striking exchanges. I struggle to understand how you do not realize the impact reach has on fights.

    • Ian Price

      Yeah prolly. It’s gonna take a Hail Mary lunge by Johny, but that’s where Georges just ducks under and now we’re on the ground for 2 minutes of GnP

      • MmaGoingDownHill

        GSP doesn’t ‘Gnp’ … he holds fighters down so they can’t do anything and he doesn’t take hits. Dont get me wrong, im a GSP fan but he is NOWHERE near as exciting as he used to be, and his finish rate is appalling, dragging a fight out to the judges call is not the way when you can dominate opponents like GSP can.

  • https://www.facebook.com/bestnicknameeverbros Eugenio Croitoru

    “It’s sometimes forgotten that St-Pierre comes from a striking background.”

    WAIT WHAT GSP COMES FROM A STRIKING BACKGROUND!?

    • Agent119

      Yes, GSP has a striking background. The wrestling came later. Haven’t you heard Rogan mention that during his fights?

      • Maddawgmar

        Don’t know about u but I’m usually sleeping during his fights.

      • Double K

        Eugenio & Maddaw have never seen his earlier ufc fights where GSP finished his opponents regularly

        • Cptmats

          GSP was predictable back then as well, difference is back then you could almost bet on George by second round TKO….every time !

          After becoming champ all his fight became five rounds instead of three and George has a deathly fear of gassing out and losing a decision.

          Its not that He can’t finish fights, he’s just too scared to try !

          • Guest

            Its not such a bad thing to know he was capable of finishing his opponents back then, its just that even though he’s more predictable now, that’s not a good because its got to the point you know he wont try to finish a guy

    • Cptmats

      He was a karate black belt before he started mma.

  • Ian Price

    I think GSP will take it, but I’m hoping for a flash Bigg Rigg KO. Gotta root for the underdog on this one. He’s not much of an underdog though. GSP may very well be the best MMA wrestler in the world, along with Sonnen, Weidman, maybe Mendez, Faber, Cain…. But Johny could possibly be the most decorated non-MMA wrestler around. Is there even another fighter who has won the D1 NCAA championship twice?

    • Rupert Martin

      I think Ben Askren was a multiple time NCAA champ too. Josh Kos, won the NCAA Championship and went undefeated en route to winning it. GSP has the best MMA wrestling. It’s a lot different. I wrestled in college and freestyle, while training MMA with gloves on, I get taken down by guys who would NEVER be able to take me down in a wrestling match. GSP’s transitions from striking to his take downs are second to none. If Hendricks can’t land a big punch I see GSP winning this. Kinda the same as Canelo vs Mayweather fight….

    • Cptmats

      “He’s not much of an underdog though. ”

      This is Georges easiest fight in a long time !

      • Steven Thurman

        agreed, since Dan Hardy. Lol

  • http://www.CombatScienceMMA.com/ CombatScienceMMA

    Hendricks is tough and yes he has a punches chance but GSP is just the better fighter overall. Hendricks is a great wrestler with KO power but his boxing isn’t anything for GSP to worry about. I’m curious to see if Hendricks can out wrestle him though and how his bottom game is. GSP has the footwork, the ground game and the transitions. Johny has such a short reach as well and cuts a lot of weight. This fight has a lot of excitement to it because everyone is curious to see who can dethrone this guy.

  • Rakesh

    A puncher’s chance. Kind of like you had against gsp, carlos

    • Kbroesq

      Yeah, bash the guy because someone asked him a question and he gave an honest answer. You know, it’s not like these guys are just spewing out crap without being asked first.

      He was probably asked how he thought the fight would turn out from a journalist, and he gave his answer. It’s not like he’s just running to a microphone to say stuff like this.

      Give him a break.

  • JDMMA

    Thanks Carlos,,, now I wouldn’t have to see the fight

  • WhoCaresNotMeUS

    Carlos COndit should not comment on anything in regards to GSP or anyone fighting him because he showed NOTHING in his fight with GSP.

    • OverratedHippie

      Carlos Condit has fought both of these men, they are literally his last two fights. If anyone has solid input on comparing the two, it would be Carlos Condit. Also he landed a headkick that wobbled GSP. He lost 99% of the fight, but was working off his back and landed one clean shot on the feet. Show the man respect,

      • Steven Thurman

        And to add to that.. did more damage to both the fighters than they could dare try to him.

        • Cptmats

          maybe you don’t remember Condit looking like he went through a windshield by the end of the first round !

          http://cdn1.sbnation.com/imported_assets/1306685/cc2.gif

          • Steven Thurman

            its a cut, if you fight or train (And ill assume you have) than you know that one man can be cut and bleeding even if he completely beat the hell out of the other.

          • Cptmats

            Except that wasn’t the case here,
            George did more in every round.
            Even the one he was knocked down in. 50-45 on all cards

          • Steven Thurman

            Im aware GSP took it in points, but so does Dominik Cruz, and even when he his out striking his opponents he is never kicking their ass. Well Mostly. But i havent seen the fight in a while so maybe he was doing more damage than I remember.

          • Cptmats

            George just looks rough after a fight ! Pale skin that bruises easily and scar tissue on his nose that cut in every fight. I think alot of time he looks worse than he actually is.
            Look at all the shots BJ took from Diaz in that fight. Diaz had to land at least four times as many shots yet in the post fight pic, Diaz’s face is just as messed up as BJ’s

  • james j

    I remember GSP beat the hell out of Koshek who was also a national champion wrestler.

    • Double K

      College wrestling is completely different to MMA

  • james j

    Carlos Condit = gatekeeper

    • Cptmats

      The Second best WW in the world is a gate keeper ?

      • Ian Price

        He is not a gatekeeper. After that head kick of GSP…..50/50….GSP recovered, otherwise Condit would have won.
        Now he claims to have improved his wrestling and TDD significantly. We shall see.

        • Cptmats

          would have won ?
          Kick did nothing to GSP but knock him off balance !
          He even took a step to try and catch himself and then broke his fall with his hand when he did fall.

          • MmaGoingDownHill

            Don’t know what fight you were watching but that kick had Gsp rocked!! if carlos could have landed clean GnP then he would have won that fight.

          • Cptmats

            Not even close. It knock him off balance nothing more !

            Carlos would have won the fight ? LOL He didn’t even win that round !

  • Ian Price

    Here’s my WW list. a little diffrernt from the ufc or fightmatrix:

    1. Maia (I don’t think anyone can touch him)
    2. Condit (now that he supposedly has improved a wrestling and TDD…. We shall see, but I’m giving him the benefit of the doubt because he trains so hard).
    3. GSP
    4. Johny Hendricks
    5. Robbie Lawler – used to be a brawler, now he has legit technical standup and grappling
    6. Matt brown – a beast
    7. Ben Askren
    8. Rory MacDonald (5)
    9. Jake Ellenberger – I used to think he was way up there, but now he has to prove it again. Needs to win 2 in a row to even talk a
    10. Kampmann – he’s a beast, but these other guys are just too balanced and good.

    • Lucas Freire

      huh…just…what?

      • Cptmats

        i know right !
        Condit and Maia ahead of George ? LOL

  • Ping

    Hendricks wins via kimura from side mount.

    • Lucas Freire

      wat

    • Wolf Ticket

      No, Ben Hendeson wins this fight by split decision. The odds are about the same as what you said :)

  • Informed One

    LOL@Ianprice, Kampmann is a beast?? I get the criticism of gsp of late, but your list is in shambles. As far as popularity goes, we forget that our rooting for or against a guy has no impact on a fight’s outcome, it is only to show our support.
    If anybody deserves rooting for it’s GSP, regardless of style. The guy is polite, respectful, he is everything i want my kids to look up to. Lets not forget that when the fight card is over, we go back to real life where other things matter. Do I enjoy the persona of connor mcgreggor? More than anybody at the moment, but the world is a better place with people like GSP in it.
    If the average MMA fan had their way, all the GSPs would be replaced with Nick Diaz, and our next generation would be watching in serious trouble. For better or worse, kids idolize atheletes. Lets not throw the good guys under the bus huh fellas?

    • Ian Price

      Totally agree about the role model aspect. I would like more GSP’s and fewer little nicks running around (unless he straightened himself out). I think he’s a fine gentleman indeed. Also good point about the entertainment value of the Connor mcgregors out there, vs the world needing more GSPs in it.

      Not sure why you laughed at my list? I don’t laugh at your opinions. Besides, why would it se seem so far-fetched that someone thinks the 10-th best welterweight on the planet is a “beast”.?

  • Steven Thurman

    Ive been saying it forever, with the condit vs Hendricks fight as an example, Johnny basically just lunges his left hand out over and over again, he has KO power but he isnt that great of a striker, against technical strikers he has to take it to the ground, and GSP isnt one that will be taken down so easily.. And his jab will take away the chances of Hendricks taking him down with that left hand

  • Hugh Shakeshaft

    Just a hunch, but I’m thinking GSP might try to take him down.