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B.J. Penn to File Complaint Against Georges St Pierre

Sports Illustrated breaks the story:

After reportedly deciding to shelve a complaint against UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre, it appears B.J. Penn and his representatives have had a change of heart.

Penn's trainer, Rudy Valentino, told by text message that Penn has decided to move forth in filing a formal complaint with the Nevada State Athletic Commission alleging Georges St. Pierre's corner knowingly and illegally used Vaseline on his body to gain an unfair advantage Saturday night.

"Lawyers for B.J. are writting (sic) a complaint with the commission," Valentino said. "I just spoke to J.D. and B.J. a few minutes ago. They feel they have ations (sic)."

As far as my reaction to this news, I'm in agreement with this comment by BE reader Dropkick434:

It comes down to this. No fighter should ever have to worry about their opponent trying to grease themselves in a fight. The fact that this is tolerable to anyone is a shock to me. And the fact a writer I formally respected on my favorite site takes the side that the victim in this case has no integrity because he wants his opponent to fight by the same rules is absolutely reprehensible. Victim might be over dramatic but I don’t understand why this has all been about BJ when it sounds like Chuck Liddell had a bigger part in starting the controversy and we wouldn’t even be talking about this if GSP’s team hadn’t rubbed vaseline all over his shoulders and back.

Zak Woods has a couple of good historical analogies (he also agrees with me that Rome is Wrong):

the suspicious use of some topical product by Kenny Rogers in the 2006 World Series. The St. Louis Cardinals correctly identified that Rogers had some substance on his hand that was affecting his pitching ability. The impact was not as great to change the outcome of the World Series, St. Louis won, but the Cardinals were in the right to point out a violation and demand an investigation, the latter of which they didn't do. 

The second analgous example comes from the world of boxing when Alexis Arguello fought Aaron Pryor. Pryor won the first bout with a techincal knockout in the 14th round. However the fight was tainted when Pryor's trainer called for a special water bottle right before the TKO, referring to it as "the bottle I mixed", leading to speculation it was tainted. The two met again and that time it only took 10 rounds for Pryor to defeat Arguello.

There are several parallels in these two events as well as UFC 94. All involve suspicious substances that could be construed as cheating. Yet, in the two examples I citied, the subtances did not affect the result.

Luke has already had to shut down comments in his last post on this topic so consider yourselves warned to play nice in the comments. No name calling and try to keep your disagreements reasonable and friendly.

Personally I think even B.J. Penn agrees this didn't effect the fight outcome, but since Mayhem Miller and several other previous opponents of GSP have complained about this practice, I think it merits investigation by the NSAC. Most importantly, I think it means that Thiago Alves will get a fair chance to take the title from GSP without having to worry that he'll be greased.