Carlos Condit didn’t earn the nickname “The Natural Born Killer” by playing it safe during his fights.
The former WEC welterweight champion and UFC interim titleholder goes for the finish when he sees the opportunity, to which his 28 finishes among his 30 career wins attest. He’s also an eight-time bonus winner with six Fight of the Nights to his credit, and his UFC 195 bout with Robbie Lawler was MMA Fighting’s 2016 Fight of the Year.
So when Condit hears the criticisms directed at current UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley, whom many consider a play-it-safe fighter, he understands why.
“I can definitely see where the critics are coming from,” Condit said on Monday’s edition of The MMA Hour. “We’re athletes but we’re also entertainers, people by the pay-per-view to be entertained. That’s part of this. This is show business. I know that winning is super important and a gameplan is super important, but at some point you have to, this is the hurt business and you gotta to try to put your opponent out.”
Woodley came under scathing criticism for his performance in a unanimous decision against Demian Maia at UFC 214, although it later came out that Woodley suffered a shoulder injury early in the fight which is going to keep him sidelined awhile. Condit believes Woodley could have finished the bout if he had turned up the heat.
“You know he’s obviously a super, super talented dude,” Condit said. “I did watch the last fight against Maia. I felt like he at a time where he could he really could have turned it on and tried to finish, he didn’t.”
There is, of course, a history between the two. Woodley and Condit squared off at UFC 171, a bout Woodley won via injury TKO after Condit tore his knee. But Condit, who returns from a one-year hiatus to meet Neil Magny at UFC 219, says his critique of Woodley is not a matter of sour grapes.
“I don’t I don’t really think about it all that much. I’m really looking at small, incremental things right now. That’s big picture, but for now it’s really just getting back in fight shape, getting firing on all cylinders, getting my weapons sharp again, that’s my thought process and my priority,” Condit said.