3 FIGHTS TO WATCH: Carlos Condit edition

Robert Vallejos, MMATORCH Contributor

Carlos Condit (artist Grant Gould © MMATorch)

In this new feature, Robert Vallejos suggests three fights to rewatch  from a particular fighter, with contemporary analysis . In this edition Carlos Condit is the featured fighter.

On Saturday, Carlos Condit is scheduled to face Alex Oliveira at UFC on Fox 29. While Condit is currently on a 3-fight losing streak, there was a time that he was one of the most beloved and exciting fighters in the UFC. Here are three fights from when Condit truly was  “The Natural Born Killer.”

(Note: this is not intended to be a fighters definitive collection, but rather a nice sampling of their history)

  Carlos Condit vs. Rory MacDonald, UFC 115,  June 12, 2010,  Vancouver, British Columbia

These two veteran fighters were young pups in 2010. These future main eventers would find themselves overning the pay-per-view but stealing the show on this night.

The partisan Canadian crowd was fully behind the very young MacDonald, but it was the resilience of Condit that prevailed. Despite likely losing the first three rounds, Condit came out with a flurry of offence in the final stanza. Condit would go on the earn a very late, and slightly controversial finish.

Contemporaneous notes:

From Jamie Penick on fight night: I still don’t like the stoppage, as MacDonald was still partially defending himself and there were only seven seconds left, but had it gone to the scorecards, at best Condit would have earned a draw after doing the most damage in the fight. But that’s what happens when you lose the first two rounds. Still, this was an incredible back and forth bout and well worth going out of your way to see. This has got to be an automatic “Fight of the Night” winner.

Carlos Condit vs. Georges St-Pierre, UFC 154,  November 17, 2012,  Montreal, Quebec, Canada

In many ways, Condit was just a supporting character in the larger story of St-Pierre’s return to welterweight dominance. Regardless of the fact that Condit’s interim title run has become a trivia note, this title unification fight was an epic encounter between two former teammates.

GSP returned from an 18-month layoff, looking as sharp as ever. However, this fight was much more entertaining than the dominant-but-unistresing fights that GSP has prior to his hiatus. On this night Condit proved that he could be an exciting fighter, ins spite of the outcome.

Contemporaneous notes:

From Jamie Penick on 11/12/12: Before I get to anything else, I can’t help but give as much credit as possible to Carlos Condit. The former WEC Welterweight Champion, who earned the Interim UFC Welterweight Championship in February, gave St-Pierre the toughest fight he’s perhaps ever had. Yes, St-Pierre has lost before, yes, some fighters have gotten the best of him, but Condit laid a bit of a beating on him despite losing all five rounds on two judges scorecards. That head kick was no joke. St-Pierre’s face after the fight was no joke. Condit had the best performance any fighter has had in a loss to St-Pierre, and though he fell short, he deserves the respect of every fighter and fan for what he was able to do on Saturday.

Carlos Condit vs. Robbie Lawler, UFC 195, January 2, 2016,  Las Vegas, Nevada

Carlos Condit’s last title fight, might have been the best showing of his career. When two guys who are known for having explosive fights get together, fireworks should be expected, but few could have predicted just how good this fight would be.

The controversial split decision win for Lawler seemingly took something from both men. Since this championship fight both Condit and Lawler are a combined 1-4. Both men left everything in the Octagon on this night .

Contemporaneous notes:

From Frank Hyden on 1/6/16: First off, this was a fantastic fight, one of the best you’ll see in recent memory. The fifth round was particularly unbelievable. It doesn’t seem possible that the two of them could have had such output in the final round of a grueling bout. These guys poured everything they had into every second of this fight, and it was so impressive.

 It sounds crazy to say this, but this fight is probably going to be the Fight of the Year. That’s how good this fight was. I feel confident in saying that, on the second day of the year, we got the Fight of the Year. It’s possible that something comes along and is better, but you can’t count on that, as it will take one of the greatest fights of all-time to top this. I’m sure I’m still somewhat caught up in the moment, but Condit-Lawler is one of the greatest fights of all time itself, so if something tops it, we’re all winners. We can only hope to see a better fight this year.

NOW READ THIS: HYDEN BLOG: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly from Bellator 196 and UFC 223

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