Esther Lin for MMA Fighting
Hard-hitting Johnny Hendricks believes UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre is avoiding a fight against him at all costs, which is why he feels "Rush" is favoring a fight against Nick Diaz instead.
Mixed martial arts (MMA) pundits were left scratching their heads at the matchup.
Not that people don't want to see the fight between two of the most polarizing 170-pound fighters in the world, on the contrary, it's a fight that has been on fans' wish lists and almost came to fruition last year, had it not been for Diaz skipping out on a few press conferences.
It's just some fans don't feel Diaz deserves a shot at the title, especially seeing as how he is coming off a loss and a suspension.
Not exactly a championship resume.
On top of that, many feel Johny Hendricks, who punched his ticket as number one contender at the expense of Jon Fitch, Josh Koscheck and most recently, Martin Kampmann, is being robbed of a title shot he rightfully earned.
"Bigg Rigg" has always been a calm, cool, and collected guy, and has never been much of a trash talker, so, one can understand his aggravation as to why his title shot was taking away from him just because someone ‘talked' their way into a fight.
From his recent appearance on the "The MMA Hour:"
"I was worried about (Anderson) Silva, GSP fighting Silva. I didn't know I had to worry about someone in my own weight class. I was pissed GSP wanted this, you know what I mean? Who cares what they say about you, who cares what they say about anything and fight the number one contender. I did everything I could to put myself into that kind of position, and then just to get it revoked from me because GSP wants something else. I'm actually fighting to get my title shot while he's (Diaz) on suspension, then all of a sudden GSP throws his name in front of mine. I'm actually more mad at GSP. I'm not mad at anybody else but GSP for calling somebody else out. I think he is trying to stay away from me. What other reason is there, you know what I'm saying? I tried to analyze it and he says it because he (Diaz) talked trash. Who cares? That's the point of our sport and people do talk trash and its all fun and games, who cares what someone says over the internet or what they say to your face. You fight to prove you are worthy. I feel like I have proved that I can go with GSP and I should go with GSP and here he is keeping me out of that."
When it comes to the blame game, Hendricks says even though some people may be blaming the head honchos at Zuffa, he says the blame lies solely on the shoulder of St. Pierre:
"Yes it could be a little bit of the UFC's fault, but, I'm not going to blame them. Every time someone asks me, all I want to do is look across, see GSP, and punch him, that's all I can think about, is taking that belt, or getting a shot to take that belt from him. Even here today, I'm watching videos and I'm training to fight GSP. I'm not going to give up hope and I really truly believe that I am the number one contender and I should be fighting him and hopefully he comes to his senses."
When asked to say one thing to the 170-pound champion, Hendricks was as blunt as can be:
"Don't be scared, fight me pretty much, please. Please put me in that Octagon with you and if you believe you can win, that bad, and if you believe you can honestly win, fight me and prove it. If you prove it, then I am not going to sit here and say a word. I lost, if you're better than me, if you prove it, I'm going to say, 'You're a better fighter than me.' But, don't take it away from me by throwing somebody else in there."
How about it Maniacs, does Hendricks make a strong case for himself? Should he even be in the position to have to compete against Diaz for his shot at facing Georges?
Who's to blame for the situation "Bigg Rigg" finds himself in, the UFC or St. Pierre himself?