By Ben Miller
Let us stand back and appreciate Carlos Condit. For he is a great fighter. He deserves a world title shot. He is a psychopath.
It takes at least a smidgen of mental illness to compete at the top levels of sport. A wise man once said, "you have to be smart enough to do it, and dumb enough to think it matters". That is Carlos Condit. It matters to him. You can see it in the skinny Mexican frame that's been built into a lithe sculpture of muscle and sinew. You can see it in the scraggly beard and the lack of bunny-bait tattoos. Carlos don't care.
In part the fascination is because he's not the typical fighter/dunce. This ain't some redass rassler or hard life thug. He's almost a scion. The son of a white Democratic Party operative and a Latino mother. He fights because he wants to. He loves the sport. He loves competition. He loves to whip your ass.
Condit's destruction of Marvin Kampmann was in total. And it wasn't just proving that his stand up had improved or that his takedown defense is now world class. It was about beating ass. Condit knew that he could've been better than Kampmann in their first go around. He knew that he underestimated the step up from WEC to UFC. He knew he blew it. And all that rage, all that knowledge metastasized until it formed the bloody pulp where Kampmann's face should be.
Conventional wisdom is that Condit needs to wait. If you got pregnant the night St. Pierre swept Condit 50-45, you'd barely have a newborn. Plus there's hot young Rory and Maia on a streak.
But screw them and book Condit. (With all due respect.) Condit is twenty-nine and the time is now. If St. Pierre beats Hendricks then the plot is that Condit came the closer to a Welterweight coup than anyone since Serra. If Hendricks wins in November then Condit is a rematch of a Fight of the Night.
Nobody knows how MMA is going to evolve, but we know that there won't be too many Carlos Condits. Most guys just don't care that much. Condit is savage and clinical. Full of heart and technique. He's the right kind of Freak. Not the Superman athlete who beats your ass at Ping Pong the first time he picks up a paddle. The guy with the brains and the guts and just enough athletic ability to challenge whichever Abercrombie model stands across the cage.
And here's the other reason that Condit should be first in line: his impatience.
You just know that the Diaz fight killed him. You know that he wanted to smash Diaz up for twenty five minutes. But he couldn't. He knew how valuable that title shot was and so he played the game.
We don't want Carlos to play the game. We want him to fight. Giving Condit the next Welterweight title shot gives us an epic war. We want impatient Carlos. We want the bearded savage. We don't want him getting too safe because he knows what's next.
The whole world knows how things are set up. On November 16, Georges fights Johnny and Rory fights Robbie Lawler. If Rory wins, he's got next.
UFC needs to shake things up. Fox Sports loves them and that's fantastic, but pay-per-view needs a boost. Feed us Carlos. Feed us a countdown special showing all of those beatings. Feed us that kick that almost took out GSP. Feed us one more helping of Carlos The Destroyer before his flame burns out and he realizes that he's too smart for this shit.