Well, B.J. Penn is a very fast starter and he has very fast hands. He's got small shoulders if you look at him, like boxing shoulders. So, I wanted to make the first couple rounds a wrestling match. A lot of clinching. A lot of moving around for him to carry my weight so the blood goes to his shoulders. His shoulders would have been heavy. His hands would not come out as fast as usual. Then, after that, pick him apart standing later in the fight.
GSP on the set of MMA Live after his victory over BJ Penn at UFC 94.
Of course a five round fight will allow you to implement this type of strategy more effectively. Usually fighters have two types of gameplans:
- They don't like to have gameplans as they prefer to adapt to situations as the fight unfolds.
- The gameplan is very basic. Attack their opponents weakness. For example, if a striker is fighting a wrestler the striker wants to keep the fight standing and vice versa.
In this age of MMA fighters where guys are training in all facets of the game, this method of gameplanning has to be implemented to a degree. In a year or so, the days of fighters mastering one discipline and then training in the others will be over in my opinion. I think fighters will have to become very detailed oriented as the game evolves. The fighters of tomorrow will come more equipped with a significant amount of weapons and defenses at their disposals. Do you think this type of detailed gameplanning is the future of MMA?