There’s a right way and a wrong way to do everything. Last week we saw Kevin Randleman duck a fight the wrong way, going from “I’ll fight anyone” to “I’ll fight anyone who makes fun of me for ducking Rafael Cavalcante.” The whole thing made him look like a hypocritical douchebag, even though refusing a fight against ‘Feijao’ was probably the smartest thing he’s done since high school.
Now we have Martin Kampmann refusing to fight TJ Grant, and he’s not coming out all pissed trying to defend his honor. He just explains it like he has half a brain:
“No disrespect to T.J. Grant, but I don’t think it’s a fight that makes any sense for me at the moment,” Kampmann said. “I want to fight some higher ranked guys. I never even knew who the guy was, and he’s probably a tough guy, but I want to fight guys who make sense for me and who can escalate me up the ladder more, so I didn’t accept that fight. I don’t know what happened, but apparently some miscommunication somewhere because I saw it all over the internet.”
“If I’m thinking with my balls, I’ll take any fight that comes up,” Kampmann said. “But I got to be smart about my career and take the fights that make sense for me, and I don’t think that fight makes sense for me at this time. Maybe when he gets some more wins in the UFC and builds up some good wins in the UFC, then maybe will meet somewhere along the road later.”
You don’t really want to go from headlining a UFC Fight Night to taking on a guy who’s only UFC fight was a prelim. Kampmann’s razor thin win over Carlos Condit raised him up into the upper echelons of the welterweight division … he’s ready for a Koscheck or Swick type fight.
As far as TJ Grant goes, I think the offer to fight Kampmann is a sign that the UFC is hot on him. TJ is basically the great Canadian hope for 2009. With the two Jasons (MacDonald and Dooms Day) out for seasoning and David L’Oiseau self-destructing, TJ and Denis Kang need to prove that Georges St Pierre isn’t the only great fighter we’ve got. Unfortunately, as hot as I am on Grant, I still think Kampmann would have been more than he could handle at the moment. So this situation works out great for everyone.