Too Much Respect: The Anthony Pettis Edition
By Benjamin Bieker
Is there such a thing as a fighter who is too self entitled? Some believe that Chael Sonnen acts like he deserves too much in the sport, but at least he is stepping up to fight people when someone gets hurt. He is not like Anthony Pettis. No, Anthony Pettis is a whole new kind of self entitlement in the MMA world. For those that do not know, Pettis has had to drop out of his planned featherweight title bout with Jose Aldo, and he thinks that since he is out of that bout he can jump right up to 155 and move TJ Grant out of his planned bout with Benson Henderson.
How can that be? Was it not Pettis who decided to go down to 145 to fight for the title? Plus, if you look at their recent track records Grant deserves it more. Grant has won five straight fights at lightweight with wins over Shane Roller, Carlo Prater, Evan Dunham, Matt Wiman, and Gray Maynard. The wins over Wiman and Maynard were especially spectacular since he finished both of them in the first round, and both of those fighters had only ever been finished one other time in nearly 40 professional bouts.
Pettis, on the other hand, has only gone 3-1 since joining the UFC. While he does have a win over current champion Benson Henderson in the WEC, he washed most of that credit away when he lost to Clay Guida and barely beat Jeremy Stephens. From there he beat Joe Lauzon and Donald Cerrone which while they are good fighters they are not near the level of Maynard. Lauzon had been finished five other times beforehand, and Cerrone had only beat Jeremy Stephens and Melvin Guillard since a loss to Nate Diaz when he fought Pettis.
Also, it is no ones fault but Pettis for getting pulled from the fight. While an injury can happen to anyone there is even more of a chance when you are not safe in your training. When you are a fighter making a weight cut to a lower weight class for the first time and are rolling with someone nearly 80 pounds more is that smart? Pettis got hurt when rolling with Phil Davis who fights at 205 while Pettis is going to fight at 145. As a practitioner of BJJ there is a lot of knowledge and help that can come from rolling with someone larger than you, but there is no reason for a professional fighter to be doing so when you are in a training camp, especially a title fight.
So, when all of this went down Pettis believed that he could just move Grant out of the title fight and face off with Henderson. He believes he is still the supposed number one contender. I am sorry, but that is just self entitlement. Pettis is the one who wanted to drop down, he is the one who texted Dana White, and he is the one not willing to wait around. Dana White has promised him a title shot wherever he wants upon his slate of clean health, but other people deserve title shots too. So, Pettis just wait for your turn, and do not believe that you deserve everything whenever you want it.
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