I know that most people here think I'm a Penn nuthugger, and dont understand my sense of humor. The truth is that yes I am a Penn fan, and no I do not like wrestlers. This is, in my opinion, an objective analysis. I'm tired of seeing all this absolutist bullshit about the fight. Everyone thinks that either BJ got dominated because GSP is an amazing fighter, or that GSP was cheating like crazy and BJ should have won. Like most things in life, the truth lies somewhere in between. I've re-watched the fight 3 times now, in HD, pausing, slow-mo, thoroughly analyzing everything that happened. So if you saw it once and are replying based on what you remember in your 4-beer haze, don't bother. The truth is that GSP came out with an incredible game plan, adhered to the motto that "if you're not cheating, you're not trying", did just enough to not get penalized, and took advantage of the slippery slope that provided (sorry for the pun). GSP was not trying to beat BJ in a fight. He was trying to win a decision - he was playing a sport. GSP's strategy was, as he stated, to slow BJ's boxing down by making him "push" for the first few rounds to tire his shoulders out. The credit for that goes to Jackson, not GSP. Wrestling is not the warriors way. American freestyle wrestling is a sport, a tamed version of combat. By out-wrestling BJ, he was able to take advantage of the ONLY advantage he had - size, not skill. Now on to the analysis. In the first round striking exchanges, GSP was only landing jabs and a few right hands, taking advantage of his 6 inches of extra reach. There's not too much you can do about that. He was only using his strikes to set up clinches, and as stated ad nauseum, making it a wrestling match. It was clear that GSP was going to have a lot of trouble taking BJ down. The shorts-grabbing incident was the first sign that GSP was planning on fighting dirty. He was doing it on purpose. As round 1 ended, they were about even in the fight. Of course, GSP won the round on the score cards because he was applying more pressure and was in a dominant position more of the time. But he didn't do anything with that dominant position - and in my opinion, that shows a weakness. Then we come to the controversy. The vasaline. Notice that after the cornerman applied the vasaline to georges face, he spends 10 seconds rubbing his temples. Why? to distract from the fact that he still had vasaline on his hands. He then rubs georges chest and back. To me, it looked like it was a conscious and purposeful move. It looked, to ME, like they were doing it on purpose. In Round 2, BJ was winning the striking exchanges despite GSP's reach advantage. GSP's coaches told him to kickbox him, but GSP knew that he would lose, so he went back to the safe strategy - wrestle. Now, around 3:45, you can see BJ reach high with his guard - and it just slips right down. Sure, this happens sometimes from sweat. But it's worth noticing that it happened this time. It keeps happening every time he reaches high with his guard. Every. Time. Then GSP passes BJ's guard like butter. You can't deny Georges his props on that, his guard passing, not just here but throughout the entire fight, was excellent. It's a clue that GSP's BJJ is better than we may think - It's a shame he chooses to GnP people instead of using that BJJ to submit opponents. And that's just what he does for the rest of the round, GnP. It didn't look too horribly damaging, but it was certainly effective. In between rounds 2 and 3, we see only a moment of the commission stepping in, and it's telling what we hear the redcoat say - "you were rubbing his back!" and then you see the black guy put something into his pocket, or throwing it away out of frame, you can't tell where the object really goes. Then you hear Jackson saying "the inspector is here!" while the black guy, who had been greasing up GSP, looks to be smirking a bit (or it could just be the natural facial expression when your fighter appears to be winning.) The inspector then wipes down GSP with a towel - unfortunately, effectively spreading the vasaline around. All you need is a very, very thin layer, and cotton does not absorb it ladies and gents. In round three, the tone of the rest of the fight begins to be established with GSP's pseudo-superman jab. An excellent punch to be sure, it clearly rattled BJ and I think it may have started the nose bleed. GSP's jabs were very effective in the first minute of this round, the way Penn's jab was stifling to Sherk. And once they were down, it was the beginning of the end. This is where GSP's "pushing" strategy becomes apparent. He doesn't try to finish Penn, he just tries to soften him up with arm punches to the body, and big punches/elbows to the head. When Penn gets back up (a moment which we have to give BJ mad props for - he was able to do<i> exactly</i> what GSP was trying to stop him from doing, what GSP is BEST at stopping people from doing, while GSP was still greased up!) he was unable to reverse the pattern of the fight and take GSP down. Instead GSP used the fence to take BJ down again, and spent the last minute of the round punching and elbowing BJ's head in the corner of the cage. This is one of the reasons why I, personally, apart from just this fight, believe that the ring is the better place for fights than the cage. I think the ring encourages more skillful fighting, whereas the cage encourages brutish wrestlers. But this is just my personal opinion. Now we also see between the third and fourth round that GSP's wonderfully sneaky cornerman rubs GSP's shoulders again - and immediately the official grabs a towel and starts wiping. The conspiracy theorist inside me wants to point out that as soon as the officials start, they cut to more highlights from the round, but that just seems like going too far. So I will simply mention it in case anyone else wants to be nutty and call it a conspiracy Round 4. Joe Rogan nails it on the head - "BJ Penn is starting to look discouraged, and Georges St. Pierre is looking fired up" BJ is doing what he can on his feet, but it is evident that Jacksons strategy is working perfectly. All the body shots have slowed BJ's core movement considerably, and all the pushing has BJ's punches looking sluggish. 30 seconds in, GSP shoots in directly under a lazy jab from BJ, and it's pretty much all over from there. But that's not to compliment GSP. Over and over, he hits BJ DIRECTLY in the back of the head, in the EXACT spot where you are not supposed to. Herb Dean warns him once, twice, THREE separate instances in the span of a minute. The third time he doesn't threaten to take a point, he threatens to stand them up. Really, Herb? That many times in that short of a period of time, stopping and starting again and again - it was on purpose. Just like Jon Jones spinning back elbow to Stephan Bonnar illustrated earlier in the night, shots there are very disorienting. The beating continues for the rest of the round, but BJ keeps fighting back, trying to escape, regaining butterfly guard, punching back. He keeps fighting. He doesn't quit. But his corner decides they've seen enough. Not BJ, his brother. The doctor agrees and that's that. But can you blame his brother? BJ had the warrior spirit, he didn't quit and he wasn't going to. He wasn't a bitch like GSP was against Serra. He could have tapped, he knew the fight wasn't going to be changing, but he was a man. He stayed in it until his family had seen enough. Is GSP the best fighter in the world? No. Is he the best wrestler in MMA? Yes. Is he the best welterweight in the world? Yes. Now we'll see how he does against someone even bigger than him in Thiago Alves, and after that, if we're lucky, we'll see GSP vs Anderson Silva. If he finishes Anderson, he will be the best fighter in the world, no question. If he outwrestles him and grinds out a decision, there will still be a debate between him and Fedor. I'll be on Fedor's side. I want to see fighters, not wrestlers.