After Carlos Condit put Dan Hardy to sleep at UFC 120, most believed he was one more high-profile win away from advancing to a championship fight. However, when he was presented with a surefire top contender scrap against Jon Fitch, Condit opted for some R&R with his ever expanding family instead.
Prior to bumping his record to 26-5 last month, Condit told 5thRound.com he was enjoying the birth of his only child in addition to the most rigorous training camp of his life. Although his flexible training schedule allowed him to bond with his baby boy, it wasn’t exactly the irreplaceable quality time the first-time father had in mind.
When his Bat Phone rang with Octagon brass on the other end, Condit reluctantly declined the February 5th opportunity.
“It just didn’t work out as far as timing went,” he told MMAJunkie.com. “I didn’t think I was going to be able to get a long enough camp in for Fitch for the time period that they were wanting me to fight.”
Considering the the UFC’s welterweight division is one of their deepest, it didn’t take long for the company to arrange another spectacular matchup. In steps Jake Ellenberger, who dons an imposing 22-5 professional record and has finished off 19 of his victims before the final horns have sounded.
Fitch, on the other hand, has received quite a bit of flack from fans for his inability to provide spectacular endings. Although he owns an impressive 23-3 resume, 13 of his wins have come via decision. The former #1 contender’s last eight contests have all gone to the judges’ scorecards. Fitch won all of them except a lopsided trouncing to reigning 170-pound king Georges St-Pierre at UFC 87.
It was a statistical fact the “Natural Born Killer” was quick to highlight.
“I imagine it will go like Fitch’s fights go, usually,” Condit said. “Ellenberger has a lot of power, and I don’t think Fitch is going to risk standing up with him for very long. So I imagine that he’s probably going to take [Ellenberger] down and outgrapple him. Fitch is a great fighter. I’m not taking anything away from him. I’m a fan. I just think he’s not really a finisher, and that’s his thing. But he’s one of the best fighters in the division either way.
“But like I said, Ellenberger has a hell of a lot of power and I think he could definitely take Fitch out because he’s dangerous.”
UFC 126 takes place inside the Mandalay Bay Event Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
No word on when Condit will make his return to action.