Carlos Condit just doesn't get it.
Back at UFC 115 in June 2010, the "Natural Born Killer" scored a come-from-behind technical knockout finish over the previously undefeated mixed martial arts (MMA) welterweight upstart, Rory MacDonald, at the third round buzzer. Indeed, Condit got off to a slow start and if he let it go to the judges scorecards, "Ares" might have walked away with the upset.
But, if the Queen had balls, she'd be King.
Condit got the decisive finish and didn't look back, piling up three more wins and earning his position as the number one 170-pound contender in 2012. He made the unpopular decision to wait for division kingpin Georges St. Pierre and that patience nearly paid off in the third round of their championship match at UFC 154 last month.
After a competitive two rounds of action, Condit uncorked a beautifully executed head kick that put "Rush" on his back, fighting just to survive. Unfortunately for Condit, St. Pierre did just that and turned the tide in his favor, cruising the rest of the way en route to a clear unanimous decision victory.
Even in defeat, Condit has come away with several valuable lessons learned (via ESPN.com):
"I proved that I can compete with the best in the world. I almost had the fight in the bag. With some adjustments and a few tweaks in my game, I'm going to be able to capitalize on those moments that I had in the last fight.... I think I did a pretty good job. I did the best that I could in preparing for Georges, knowing what I knew. Some things worked and some things didn't; now we have to go back and refine. After a test like that, I have a lot of information to come back a much better fighter."
Meanwhile, on the opposite side of the tracks, MacDonald continued to win, too. He piled up four consecutive victories, including his most recent beat down of B.J. Penn at UFC on FOX 5 earlier this month. It was after that high-profile performance, perhaps the most important of his career, that MacDonald leveraged the opportunity to call out Condit.
"I was humilated and embarrassed after that fight. I think about that fight all the time. It haunts me and I really need to get past that chapter in my life. Well, my challenge is out there, it's up to Carlos to accept my challenge. And I know he's a warrior, I don't think he would decline. I mean, he's coming off a loss, he's gotta fight somebody. Might as well be me."
It was a sentiment that caught Condit off guard. That's because he feels he gave MacDonald the "worst beating of his life" and that he "beat the snot out of him." So why, then, would MacDonald be so eager to get locked inside a cage with a man who beat him up more than two years ago and who is a much better fighter now than he was then? Especially after that man is coming off a loss?
Revenge, it seems, is a personal and unexplainable emotion. However, it's an emotion that Condit is more than willing to exploit for his own benefit in 2013.
"Rory has a lot of hype behind him; people are talking about him. A win over him -- another win over him -- will put me right back in the [welterweight title] mix."