Posted by Jackelope
The one thing I don't think you're taking into account are the intangible factors. There's plenty of guys out there who have crisp technical skills, but don't have the heavy hands or the defense to go with them. Sure, there's the way a punch "should" look, but just because it's not technical doesn't mean it's not effective. Hell, Forrest Griffin throws some pretty technical punches, but he doesn't seem to have massive KO power on the feet. Chuck Liddell, on the other hand, throws some ugly ass looping shots, but they knock people out all the time. I agree that he hasn't fought top striking competition, though. The only way this differs from B.J. Penn is that B.J. has fought standup wars against great MMA strikers and won them. He tooled GSP up on the feet, he tooled Joe Stevenson on the feet (who actually has a pro boxing record and has been boxing for over 10 years) and even in the small exchanges with Takanori Gomi he dominated the standup war.
I agree that "great" and "excellent" are thrown around way too loosely, that's why I said "Legendary" when I described Semmy Schilt, Jerome LeBanner, and Crocop
If you want to look at it that way you can call Crocop a horrible striker in certain regards. You can call Mark Hunt a horrible striker in regards.
I can live with people saying BJ is a great striker, I just don't think so myself. Don't get me wrong, it's not a weakness BY FAR. It's basically a pick your poison type of thing with him, do you want to get KO'd but still has a punchers chance yourself or get submitted. It's just BJ is a little better on the ground then on the feet. That's basically where I'm getting at. Some people say he's at an elite K-1 level and would take the K-1 lightweight title the first chance he got. I'd disagree, he would probably put up a solid effort but I don't think he'd win.
I guess I'm just waiting until he faces the winner Huerta/Florian to call him a great striker. I don't think he'll take either of them down and doubt either of them will do the same. We'll see a good stand up war since Florian's MT is sick and Huerta has so much heart, such a great chin, and packs so much power. After he beats them I'll switch over to the "great" side.