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Old 02-09-2009, 01:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Kenny training with GSP for Penn fight

http://mmamania.com/2009/02/09/canflo-k ... tle-fight/

WAR KENNY!!

Kenny Florian was widely regarded as the clear cut number one contender in the crowded 155-pound division following his win over Roger Huerta via unanimous decision at UFC 87: “Seek and Destroy” on August 9.

But his second chance at championship gold never came.

That’s because current lightweight champion, BJ Penn, was set to rematch welterweight kingpin Georges St. Pierre at UFC 94: “St. Pierre vs. Penn 2” at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, on January 31, putting the division strap temporarily on ice.

Rather than sitting on the sidelines and waiting his turn, Florian decided to keep busy. And he wasn’t taking fights with “slouches” or “cans” to ensure that he remained atop the title contender totem pole.

On the contrary, he accepted a very dangerous fight against Joe Stevenson at UFC 91: “Couture vs. Lesnar” at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas back on November 15. It was high profile bout between two fighters who have each missed out on winning the vacant division title.

Florian dominated “Daddy” in the first round, finishing the former TUF 2 winner via rear naked choke for his sixth straight win. Aside from his unanimous decision loss to Sean Sherk at UFC 64 ‘Unstoppable,’ Florian hasn’t tasted defeat since being overwhelmed by Diego Sanchez at the TUF 1 finale in April of 2005.

Now that UFC 94 is in the books and BJ Penn is (hopefully) set to defend his title against the Boston native at some point this summer, Florian is hoping to take a page out of the St. Pierre handbook by traveling to Canada’s Tri-Star gym, headed by Firas Zahabi, to train with “Rush” in preparation for his title shot, according to The Fight Network.


Florian is based out of his own gym in Brookline, Mass., Florian Martial Arts Center, which he owns with his brother, Keith. In addition, Florian trains at F-15 Training Center with Peter Welch his boxing coach. His Muay Thai and MMA Coach is Mark DellaGrotte.

The trip to Canada is a logical one. Vaseline notwithstanding, no fighter in history has been able to nullify the Hawaiian’s gameplan like St. Pierre did in their second outing. The welterweight champ dominated Penn in every round, forcing his corner to throw in the towel prior to the fifth frame in a surprisingly one-sided contest.

The same strategies probably won’t work for Florian, who does not possess the physical abilities that St. Pierre does. Still, it’s easy to see the value in training with a fighter who has already faced (and beaten) your opponent on two occasions.

The rest is up to Florian.
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Old 02-09-2009, 02:30 PM   #2 (permalink)
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i can see why florian would want to train with bj, but i don't think he's going to get much out of this. his strategy going in should be to outstrike bj instead of take this to the ground like gsp did. florian's muy thai is really sharp and i think he coupld pick apart bj over time and eventually get the tko. bj has great boxing, but isn't as versatile a striker as kenny, so i could see him having trouble in a stand up battle with him.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:13 PM   #3 (permalink)
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This is a very smart move by Florian, but the article is right when it says Florian doesn't posses the physical skills of GSP.

I still don't see Florian taking out BJ. In fact, I think BJ is a little better in every aspect of the game. Florian's biggest strengths, his BJJ and striking, are also BJs and BJ is better at both IMO. Still a good match up though and Florian is definitely deserving of his title shot. And if BJ doesn't train hard for this fight maybe Florian could pull it out with his cardio, which is the only aspect I see in Florians favor.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:25 PM   #4 (permalink)
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this is good news. i am definately a total BJ penn fan. and after seeing his last fight i dont really want to be his fan. so i hope florian brings his best game so i can trade. bj's heart was left in the octagon in his last fight.
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Old 02-09-2009, 03:28 PM   #5 (permalink)

 
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I really dont see what GSP has to offer Ken Flo as a training partener for Penn, Kenny is not gonna take BJ down and if he even starts thinking he is GSP for a second he is in for a long ass night. Kenny needs to stick with DellaGrotte and go with his own strengths because he doesnt share any of the strengths GSP used to beat BJ, he isnt a much bigger or stronger guy, he isnt a great wrestler and he doesnt have GSP's top game,
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:24 PM   #6 (permalink)
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People really need to learn how to see the big picture here. A couple of points most posters here are missing.

First of all, how is BJ a better striker then Florian. Saying that is literally like saying boxing is a better striking art then MT. Sure, BJ's boxing is great, but it's only about as good as Kennys MT, so I really don't see him accomplishing much in the standup. On top of that, BJ only has about 2-3 rounds to finish Kenny before he gasses and Kenny brings the apocolypse down on his ass.

Second of all, GSP's camp has BJ identified down to a T. So this can be a very important information for Kenny coming into the fight, especially with Dr. Jackson coming up with an assisting game plan.

Third, since I've already established in my mind atleast that Kenny's going to win in the standup, if he can stuff BJ from taking him down, it will be a huge part in deciding whether or not he will win. Training with GSP's camp will improve his wrestling by lightyears. And lets not forget how quickly Kenny improves, so this may get his level of TDD to where it needs to be so that he can stop BJ from taking him down. And while it might not aid him in taking BJ down specifically, it will aid him in his offensive wrestling as well which will be very benifical in the future. Also, his only threats at LW other then BJ are Sherk and Deigo. I think most people will agree if he can stop them from taking them down, it will mean victory for him.

So overall, this fight comes down to TDD, and training with this camp my be enough to bridge the gap between Kennys TDD and BJ's TDs. Furthermore, even if Kenny loses, this will be a very valuable learning experience that will bring him much closer to becoming the best fighter in the world. If he continues to train with GSP or atleast more specifically on wrestling for a year or 2, I think he will actually reach that title, and be able to beat BJ by then.
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I agree with Toxic that Kenny should stay with Dellagrotte because now BJ is going to be motivated to prove that the Tri-star gym doesn't have his number.
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:35 PM   #8 (permalink)
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He can work on his TDD by working with GSP. Bj is going to try and take this fight to the ground for sure, and Kenny needs to be prepared for that. Also, branching out and training with other top fighters/athletes is always a positive thing.
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:41 PM   #9 (permalink)
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i think bj lost his motivation ... i wont be surprised if kenny beats him
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Old 02-09-2009, 04:41 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I really dont see what GSP has to offer Ken Flo as a training partener for Penn, Kenny is not gonna take BJ down and if he even starts thinking he is GSP for a second he is in for a long ass night. Kenny needs to stick with DellaGrotte and go with his own strengths because he doesnt share any of the strengths GSP used to beat BJ, he isnt a much bigger or stronger guy, he isnt a great wrestler and he doesnt have GSP's top game,
It's almost as bad as BJ training with McCully.
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