Wednesday, May 18, 2022

(Archives) Rodriguez On BJ Penn Fight: It Wasn’t A Late Stoppage (2017)

The following article was published on this day five years ago. It is presented to you in its original, unaltered form, courtesy of The MMA News Archives.


Headline: Rodriguez On BJ Penn Fight: ‘I Don’t Think It Was Late Stoppage

Yair Rodriguez’s first fight of 2017 was a successful one. “El Pantera” shared the Octagon with Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Hall of Famer B.J. Penn last night (Jan. 15). It was a one-sided destruction in favor of Rodriguez.

The first round saw the Mexican bruiser throw out multiple kicks that kept “The Prodigy” backing up. Early on, Penn tried to keep his opponent against the fence, but Rodriguez got out with ease. From there on, he kept his frenetic offense going.

In the second round, Rodriguez landed a front kick followed by a straight punch that dropped Penn. He followed up with some vicious ground-and-pound. The fight was stopped by referee “Big” John McCarthy 24 seconds into the round.

Some felt the stoppage should’ve come sooner. In a backstage interview with Megan Olivi, Rodriguez disagreed:

“I don’t think so. He was moving and even though he was in danger, I knew he was pretty good. And throwing those upside kicks and all that stuff so I was just trying to be careful with that. If I stop a little, he’ll probably stand up. He’s a guy who has a lot of experience. You cannot play around with that. So you gotta take a chance, if you have the chance you take it a hundred percent.”

During his post-fight interview, Rodriguez didn’t call anyone out specifically. He explained why.

“I’m a real contender in the featherweight division. I don’t have nothing to bring. I don’t wanna ask for no fighters. I’m not the type of fighter to ask for other opponents. I don’t pick my guys. I don’t pick my guys and say, ‘oh I think I can win against this guy,’ no. I’m just gonna wait and see what the UFC wants to bring next. They know their plans and I’m just here.”

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