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BJ Penn: We All Want To Get To The Top, But There Can Only Be One

BJ “The Prodigy” Penn has always been cast as one of the most purely talented fighters ever to compete in the sport, but the 32-year-old Hawaiian doesn’t believe that he’s yet lived up to his potential. For that reason, he’s looking to put on the performance of his life against his impending UFC 137 opponent Nick Diaz.

“I’m excited for this fight,” says Penn. “I’m excited to take another step and move forward in the right direction. Everyone’s goal is to get to the top and to get the top, we’re gonna have to beat each other. There can only be one.”

Diaz is a friend and occasional training partner of Penn’s and is a replacement opponent for Carlos Condit, who was promoted to face welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre on the same card when Diaz refused to participate in promotional media events for the fight. Penn knows what Diaz does well and credits him for it, but is going to try to do all of it better than the Stockton kid come fight night.

“He sets a fast pace, he throws a lot of punches. He hits hard, he goes to the body well. His grappling is like a pure jiu-jitsu type style, very good grappler. He does a lot of things very well,” he asserts. “We’ve just got to do everything he can do but do it faster, stronger, harder and first.”

UFC 137: St-Pierre vs. Condit goes down on October 29 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.