View Full Version : UFC strips BJ Penn of Welterweight Titlle


Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 08:17 AM
MMAFighting.com (http://www.mmafighting.com/news/2004/ufc_040518.html)
Is reporting that the UFC has stripped welterweight champion BJ Penn of his title.

originally posted at MMAFighting.com
UFC strips BJ Penn of Welterweight Title
Posted on Tuesday, May 18, 2004

The UFC has stripped BJ Penn of his Welterweight title. In addition, the UFC is no longer working with Penn. This is a result of BJ Penn signing to fight at K-1's MMA event on May 22nd in Japan. BJ Penn is set to face Duane "Bang!" Ludwig this weekend.

BJ Penn started his mixed martial arts career with the UFC in 2001. Penn has fought in a total of eight UFC events. At UFC 46, Penn captured the UFC title by submitting the top welterweight Matt Hughes.

The UFC is expected to make an announcement soon regarding their vacant Welterweight title.

Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 08:23 AM
.From Sherdog.com (http://www.sherdog.com/)

Tuesday, May 18, 2004
Zuffa, LLC, owner of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, announced that due to BJ Penn’s reported signing with the K-1 organization, Penn would no longer compete in UFC events. Additionally, Zuffa stripped him of his title.

“I am looking forward to moving on and crowning a champion,” stated UFC president, Dana White.

An announcement will be made soon regarding who will compete for the welterweight championship.

This comes just a few months after BJ Penn submitted former UFC champion Matt Hughes in the first round to grab the title. He had not yet held his first title defense

Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 08:25 AM
From MMAWeekly.com (http://www.mmaweekly.com)

BJ Penn has always wanted to fight in Japan and this weekend he is living that dream taking on Duane "Bang" Ludwig on the K-1 show on Saturday. What is his future after that fight?

"I'm very happy with the decision I made" BJ told MMAWeekly before leaving Japan. Penn thought it would have been "bad business" to pass up this career opportunity. On the same token, he thinks it would be bad business for the UFC, if they didn't want to bring him back.

Sound Off Radio Show host Ryan Bennett asked the question recently about his decision to fight in K-1 on MMAWeekly Radio.

Penn spoke a little about the uncertainty of the fight game and life itself. He said that you never know when your last fight could be or what the future may hold and fighters have to seize the opportunities in front of them.

BJ doesn't think, even if he loses to Ludwig, that the UFC should drop him. In his mind, there could be something worked out to where the person who beat him could come to the UFC and fight him there for his title. He pointed out that only the hardcore fans keep up with the fights in Japan so it wouldn't impact that much to the average UFC fan.

BJ made it very clear that he still wants to fight in the UFC. "As far as I'm concerned, I'm still a UFC fighter," said Penn, and he hasn't heard anything different. He said that he likes the UFC and thinks Zuffa has done a good job turning the UFC around and keeping the sport of MMA going in America. Penn also had several kind words to say about UFC president Dana White's job performance with the UFC.

As far as the fight with Duane "Bang" Ludwig goes Penn told MMAWeekly, "What ever happens, happens," BJ continued, that he is not a fighter that make game plans and lets the action in the fight dictate what takes place. He said he is just going to go out there and fight. He went on to say that it's "gonna be awesome," and that he is "pumped up about this fight."

The weight limitation set is for 170 pounds, the same weight that Penn holds the UFC title for in the division. BJ is weighing 175 pounds right now and making weight shouldn't be a problem.

Penn wanted to fight Genki Sudo but Sudo chose to accept a fight against someone else. BJ questioned the caliber of opponents Genki has been facing. He further questioned how Sudo can call himself the "Neo-Samurai" when he doesn't fight top notch competition.

"I only try to fight the best," said BJ. "Bang" stepped up and took the tough match up. Penn stated, "I'm really excited about this fight." It is the classic clash of opposing styles and "I know I'm the dominate fighter on the ground and he's the dominate fighter standing up."

To hear all of what BJ Penn had to say on last week's radio show, get yourself a Premium Membership and gain access to the radio archive.

Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 08:31 AM
Inside Fighting.com (http://www.insidefighting.com/betweenRoundsDisp.aspx?uid=655)

GeNeRaL
05-18-2004, 09:38 AM
While dana White see's this as "stripping him of the title", I see it as BJ penn leaving UFC as a Champion to persue other things.

I don't see why lidell and others can fight in both UFC and Pride but BJ Penn can't co-exist in UFC and K-1, honestly.

Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 09:55 AM
I don't understand Penn. The guy *****es and begs for a title shot, gets it and wins, now does something that he knows will result in a forfeit of the title. I'm not saying that what Zuffa did was right. I don't think they should be allowed to run a monopoly. Denying fighters the opportunity to make money should be illegal.

Now they have one title holder out of five belts.Something's not right here and I have a feeling its all about money. When a fighter wins a title they expect their pay to jump. That's only right that the champions make the most money. By not having title fights they don't have to pay the purse and save money but what they're doing is making MMA in the US look like a joke because the top promotion can't even keep a champion. For a company who longs for "mainstream" acceptance, not having a recognizable champion for each weight class is going to hurt them. Bringing back past fighters who are known by the average person like Tank and Ken Shamrock isn't going to last forever.

Having title fights and contender matches brings excitement. This is what fight fans are used to. They want a guy to follow up the ladder on the road to a title. They want the underdog to beat the champ. Guys loosing titles because they want to make money (Penn, Pulver, Bustamante) isn't going to help "sell the sport." Neither is guys not getting title shots because they're "boring fighter" but that's another rant.

If that's the way the UFC wants to run things then that's fine. They're smarter than I am but at least make an effort to replace the champions after the title becomes vacant.

wondermut
05-18-2004, 10:23 AM
You have caught the correct.

Nuno
05-18-2004, 10:31 AM
Money talks...........

Kempo Chris
05-18-2004, 10:54 AM
dammit

Fallout
05-18-2004, 11:15 AM
They have one champion out of 5, and they are even having contract problems with him too. Man, this doesn't look good at all

Squezze
05-18-2004, 11:47 AM
Business is business, and the UFC did what they had to do. Penn might have screwed himself over if he loses his next few fights.

DOGGx0
05-18-2004, 12:14 PM
Originally posted by Curly Howard
I don't understand Penn. The guy *****es and begs for a title shot, gets it and wins, now does something that he knows will result in a forfeit of the title.

Money talks. Bull**** walks. If your gonna have a champion, put him to the test and pay him to fight. Unless you're gonna wait until he finds BETTER opportunities.


Originally posted by Curly Howard
Guys loosing titles because they want to make money (Penn, Pulver, Bustamante) isn't going to help "sell the sport."

Thats not the fighters fault. Its not Penn, Pulver, Bustamante's job to "sell the sport", they are training hard everyday as their job is to put food on the table and in order in doing so they put their bodies through hell. They work too hard on selling themselves that they don't have time in worrying whats "selling the sport". Obviously K-1 and Pride can "sell the sport" but UFC cant. Personally, I think its a Zuffa problem. Really, look at some of the facts...

Jens at his highest point, as a champion in the UFC made $12k to fight and $12k to win. When he left and fought in Japan as a non-champion... he made $50k to fight and $25k to win. Thats a huge difference and anyone that passes that kind of money up is just stupid. They put their bodies out on the line everyday in training, to say that they are worth any less or make them feel that they owe something to someone for giving them a belt that they earned and deserved...... is just plain ****ed up. Bj is reportly getting paid $150k to fight in this upcoming K-1, while Duane is getting paid $70k. Huge pay days, nicely ran events, a huge crowd, an awesome fan base.... what more can you ask for? It seems like the fighters love the UFC because of how known it is in America and because its where most of them are from. For example, I don't see Busta calling himself an ultamite fighter or saying that he'd like to come back to the UFC.... however Penn does, Pulver does, Ludwig does.... and I personally think its because they are Americans... they want their people to see them and cheer for them, but to serve as a champion... pay them paydays like Tito (like how K-1 is with Penn) and you get a better outcome. You can spread the wealth more evenly amongst champions and fighters that bring in the fans. You can't tell me that UFC does'nt make any money yet they can afford to pay Tito $150k to show and $75k to fight.... not even as a champion, but you pay a champion less than $25k take home, including the win.

UFC is doing something wrong. Its not the fighters IMO.

Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 12:17 PM
Reread my post. You just glanced at it. I'm not blaming the fighters.

Curly Howard
05-18-2004, 12:19 PM
Originally posted by Curly Howard
I'm not saying that what Zuffa did was right. I don't think they should be allowed to run a monopoly. Denying fighters the opportunity to make money should be illegal.

Now they have one title holder out of five belts.Something's not right here and I have a feeling its all about money. When a fighter wins a title they expect their pay to jump. That's only right that the champions make the most money. By not having title fights they don't have to pay the purse and save money

Bluecifer
05-18-2004, 12:30 PM
Originally posted by Curly Howard
Inside Fighting.com (http://www.insidefighting.com/betweenRoundsDisp.aspx?uid=655)

Great read. Can't blame BJ for leaving, only a fool would take 25k to show and 25k to win over a guaranteed $150,000. BJ was reasonable in asking the UFC just to match the 60 & 60 they were paying Hughes. He beat the man and deserved the man's paycheck. Fighters age in dog years in this sport and have to get theirs while they can. I have to say I can't stand Dana White for the way he treats his fighters, it's no coincidence that so many of the UFC's greatest champions have opted to walk.

DOGGx0
05-18-2004, 12:42 PM
Originally posted by Curly Howard
Reread my post. You just glanced at it. I'm not blaming the fighters.

I read it all now. My bads. I just had to comment on the few comments that I glanced at and then continued to ***** and complain. I hate the way Zuffa treats their fighters.

Carlao
05-18-2004, 03:21 PM
Here is the main problem for BJ Penn. There are not enough events out there that will pay him a good check. He will get this fight and then what? He is not big in size for the japan freakshows, and he too big for most good paying light weight shows.

Unfortunately, BJ went for the single big payday and lost track of the big picture of more fights. UFC has a grip on MMA in the USA, beleive me I know! And is not easy to get in any decent show, heck I promote a small show with good fighters and I have a waiting list of fighters in every weight class.

I think it will happen like it did to Murilo and Jens.

Bluecifer
05-18-2004, 06:26 PM
You make some good points but shooto pays pretty well doesn't it? Didn't Sean Sherk just fight in Bushido at 170? I would LOVE to see Sherk vs. Penn. Maybe K1 will continue to put fights together with lighter fighters. Bang, Sudo, Penn, they're off to a good start. Let's hope that the smaller guys start getting the opportunities that they deserve.

Curly Howard
05-22-2004, 11:54 PM
TTT