As reported by Dana Becker here at Caged Insider, BJ Penn evinced frustration towards popular nutritionist Mike Dolce last month; and this week, Dolce responded.
Penn had worked with Dolce in preparation for a third bout with Frankie Edgar; the first bout for Penn at 145 lbs. after winning UFC titles at 155 lbs. and 170 lbs. in years past.
A disastrous showing for Penn followed, who announced his retirement after the one-sided TKO loss to Edgar.
Asked to comment about Dolce’s work, Penn said simply: “As far as Mike Dolce goes, I would never hire him again for anything.”
When asked to elaborate, Penn answered: “No. Next question.”
On The Joe Rogan Experience podcast, Dolce described his days with the Penn team in Hawaii as “one of the oddest camps I’ve ever been to.”
He was there, he says, for only two weeks — and his suggestions weren’t routinely followed.
“I had very little influence,” he said. “I was more like a chef.”
It has been claimed that Dolce restricted Penn’s diet too much — even on the morning of the fight.
Dolce and longtime Penn friend and training partner Troy “Rude Boy” Mandaloniz even discussed the matter on his Instagram, with a pic of Penn’s light fight-day breakfast beginning the argument:
According to Dolce, it’s not true.
“I would bring some really delicious food,” he said to Rogan. “Some things would get eaten. Some things wouldn’t.”
Dolce even told Mandaloniz that Penn consumed 6000 calories in the 30 hours after weigh-ins, and was “healthy and prepared.”
Instead, Dolce points to Penn’s work ethic, saying Penn simply wasn’t training enough: “All the other athletes I work with train much more often. He trained once a day, but not quite every day.”
“I know what I did,” Dolce says. “I was one of the only bright positives with true world-class experience that was around him… you look at the fight and what happened, it had nothing to do with food.”
Credit for the transcription of Dolce’s appearance goes to Mike Bohn of MMA Junkie.