("Fitch in February for a shot at St-Pierre? Nah, I think I’ll wait for GSP clear out the division and move up to middleweight.")
Carlos Condit may have cost himself a huge opportunity.
The UFC welterweight reveals that he turned down a Super Bowl weekend fight with perennial number one contender Jon Fitch at UFC 126. Instead, Fitch will face Jake Ellenberger and the winner of the bout will wait patiently until the end of the year to face the winner of the winner of the Josh Koscheck-Georges St-Pierre UFC 124 showdown and a subsequent Jake Shields match-up in the spring.
Simply put, he’s giving up an opportunity to fight teammate Georges St-Pierre for the belt in late 2011.
Condit told MMAJunkie that the timing wasn’t right for the fight.
"It just didn’t work out as far as timing went," he told MMAjunkie. "I didn’t think I was going to be able to get a long enough camp in for Fitch for the time period that they were wanting me to fight."
By most standards, 13 weeks should be more than enough time for a full camp. Maybe Carlos doesn’t want to skip Christmas and New Year’s this year or maybe the daunting task of watching tape of Fitch without falling asleep was too much for him to bear. Whatever the reason, it’s likely that he tacked another year on to how long it will take him to fight for the title. By that time St-Pierre will likely be a middleweight and the division will be a lot more opened up, so maybe it’s a smart move for Condit.
Condit’s stock has been on a dramatic rise since he stopped Canadian wunderkind Rory MacDonald via TKO in the final seconds of their June at UFC 115 bout. Since then he knocked out former UFC number one contender Dan Hardy at UFC 120 last month.
It’s worth noting that Condit asked for the fight with Fitch in a recent interview, and in turning down the bout, he could be leapfrogged by Ellenberger in UFC welterweight contender status, despite the fact that he bested the Omaha, Nebraska native last year at UFN 19.
When asked about his thoughts on the fight, Condit predicts Fitch will win by points due to takedowns and three rounds of dry humping.
"I imagine it will go like Fitch’s fights go, usually," he said with a chuckle. "Ellenberger has a lot of power, and I don’t think Fitch is going to risk standing up with him for very long. So I imagine that he’s probably going to take [Ellenberger] down and outgrapple him. Fitch is a great fighter. I’m not taking anything away from him. I’m a fan. I just think he’s not really a finisher, and that’s his thing. But he’s one of the best fighters in the division either way.