Jackson: "We Don’t Need to Cheat to Win”

Written by Tom Ngo
February 2nd, 2009

Those kooky Albuquerque kids are at it again. MMA guru Greg Jackson spoke out on the “controversy” surrounding UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre’s dominating win over BJ Penn at UFC 94. It has been reported that the Nevada State Athletic Commission confronted GSP’s cornermen during the intermissions before the 3rd and 4thRounds for what they thought was the illegal application of Vasoline onto the back of their fighter. Jackson states that it was nothing more than a simple misunderstanding.

Phil Nurse is GSP’s Muay Thai coach, and one of the few people that the champion kept close after he trimmed down his entourage over a year ago.  Nurse is the cornerman that is being accused of the illegal greasing, however that was not what he was doing at all.

“So in between rounds, (Steve Friend) had this little drill that you do – and Phil Nurse is the one who knows how to do it – he showed Phil, and this is what Georges wanted, so we did that,” Jackson told MMAWeekly.com. “But this is why we were doing it. He rubbed your back and tapped your chest; I don’t know exactly how it works. But anyways, what that’s supposed to do is get your energy in line, or motivated or whatever. So in between rounds, we had Phil Nurse do that.”

Steven Friend is a “witch doctor” that St-Pierre met when he first moved his training down to Jackson’s Submission Fighting in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Friend has worked with many other MMA fighters, including former UFC champions Randy Couture and Matt Hughes.

“The controversy came because Phil Nurse also was putting Vasoline on Georges’ eyebrows,” Jackson continued. “In between rounds, you always want to put on Vasoline on (a fighter’s face). So Phil Nurse put all the Vasoline on his face, so his hands might have had a miniscule amount left over from that, when he went around the side and rubbed a little point on his back, and tapped on his chest.

“We told our side of the story, we said he didn’t mean to put any grease anywhere. If we were trying to grease the back we’d be greasing up and down, we would make it count. We wouldn’t do a little tiny spot in the back. The whole thing doesn’t make any sense, so they were fine with it once we gave our explanation. It wasn’t like we were taking gobs of Vasoline and slathering on his back. They didn’t understand the drill that the witch doctor was having us do, and so it looked that way. It didn’t effect the fight at all.”

That is Jackson’s story and he is sticking to it. He feels confident that the Commission will be satisfied with their explanation and will not penalize or suspend anyone from St-Pierre’s corner, specifically Nurse, for the incident.

“The whole greasing thing is pretty ridiculous,” Jackson stated. “You can’t grease somebody up. You just couldn’t do it. They check your body before you get into the cage, there’s an inspector right there. In order for us to grease him up, it would be insane. There are cameras everywhere. We don’t cheat. We don’t need to cheat to win.”

Penn’s camp stated that they intend to file a formal complaint with the Commission on Monday.

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