Last night on BJPenn.Com Radio Mitch Ciccarelli & I were joined by four entertaining guests who not only discussed their careers, but they also gave us their opinions on Jon Jones and what went down with UFC 151. Each man had their own take on the situation, but the common theme was disappointment. Maybe not in Jon Jones or the UFC, but they were all disappointed that an entire event was cancelled.
Leading off the show was Strikeforce light heavyweight Ovince St. Preux who is coming off a spectacular one punch knockout against T.J. Cook on August 18th. We asked OSP what he would’ve done had he been in Jones situation.
“I’m actually known for taking fights on short notice,” St. Preux told BJPenn.Com Radio. “I remember fighting Antwain Britt on November 19th. I went home for Thanksgiving and got a phone call asking me to fight the next weekend. I fought on December 4th and still hadn’t signed the contract until the Tuesday before the fight. As a fighter you should always be prepared especially if there is a big card coming up and there are fights in your weight class. I always make sure I stay in shape.
I didn’t know that UFC 151 was going to be shut down and they obviously had a good reason for doing that. I probably would’ve been pretty upset had I been part of that card, but at the same time you have to understand that Jones was thinking about what’s best for his situation. He may have wanted to take the fight but was talked out of it by his manager. You can’t really be pissed off at Jones because it’s his decision. Hopefully all of the other fighters will get moved to another card within the next month or so.”
UFC Featherweight Marcus Brimage was up next and he was a lot more outspoken than OSP was. Brimage had no problem telling us what he thought about Jones declining the fight with Sonnen. Brimage was extremely animated and definitely didn’t hold anything back.
“You’re the champ for a reason and if I was in Jon Jones shoes I would have fought Chael Sonnen,” admitted Brimage. “In my opinion Dan Henderson is a better fighter than Sonnen. Henderson has some OG power and there ain’t no telling when he’s gonna lay on of those H-Bombs on your ass! I wouldn’t be worried about Chael knocking me out. In my opinion Jones wrestling is good enough to negate Chael’s takedowns so that would have been a fun day for him.
Chael would’ve hyped that fight up and the fans would have wanted to see those two go at it. I thought it was an asshole move on Jones part not to take the fight because all the other fighters don’t get paid. I heard they may be getting their show money, but I’m not sure if that’s true. I know for me I’m still in the lower class of the UFC and I depend on that money. By not getting it that would suck balls because I have bills to pay.
It’s not like the card was killed because of an injury, it was stopped because one guy refused to fight another fighter. Sonnen made a very valid point when he said Jones only had a few days to prepare for him, when in reality Jones had a 10 week camp while Sonnen had been the one with just a few days to prepare. I don’t think it was a smart move on Jones part as well because of the DUI situation and Dana is quick to give people the boot. To tell Dana you’re not fighting looks bad, if he gets into anymore trouble, Dana is not going to be too happy about it.”
Danny Castillo was scheduled to face Michael Johnson on the FX portion of UFC 151. Although they were fortunate to have their bout moved they will have to wait an additional six weeks without getting paid. “Last Call” told us how that affected him and what he thought about the card being canceled.
“It does suck for me, but it’s not too bad,” said Castillo. “Initially when I heard the news I thought the main event just got scratched and not the whole card. It wasn’t until (Alchemist President) Lex McMahon called and dropped the bomb on me and said no one was fighting. Initially I was super pissed off and worried about what I was going to do. I had just bought some plane tickets short notice because I wasn’t sure who was going to be cornering me. The situation sucks, but thankfully I’ll be able to get vouchers and use them for October.
I was relieved and grateful at the same time because some of the other guys won’t be fighting until December. I’m super stoked because six weeks isn’t too long for me. It’s a pain in the ass, but that’s life. I try to focus on the positive rather than on the negative aspects of the situation. It’s hard to put myself in that situation because I don’t have Nike money. I don’t have gold around my waist and I’m still trying to make a name for myself. If it were me I would’ve definitely taken the fight, half the fights I have for Zuffa are on short notice. It’s hard for me to say why he didn’t take the fight, I don’t know if he’s afraid because of the Nike contract or what.”
Castillo then spoke about the fact that his teammate Joseph Benavidez had his UFC Flyweight Title bout moved from the main event of UFC 152 to the co-main event slot after Jones-Belfort was signed.
“I waited all day before I texted him, not by chance, but I realized how selfish I was being by feeling sorry that my fight got canceled,” Castillo admitted. “I realized then that the main event had been stolen from Benavidez. I’m not sure what type of money they get for that slot, but I know it’s not a good thing when you lose that spot. I contacted him and asked him how he was feeling and he was worried about me. He told me he was in it for the long run and he will main event a ton of fights in the future.”
We will have MFC President Mark Pavelich’s views on the whole situation up tomorrow. He gave us a completely different view being that he is on the outside of the organization. None the less, it was very entertaining.