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What’s next for Nick Diaz?

I will be the first one to admit that I am not a big fan of Nick Diaz. Some people say he is good for the sport and that he brings in many fans that normally would not be interested in mixed martial arts. I don’t believe a guy who is an admitted pot smoker and who tends to stir up as much trouble as possible is good for the sport. I found him to be very disrespectful and I could not stand his antics one bit. After waking up Sunday morning I realized that I needed to separate the man from the fighter and today I am left with a whole new respect for Nick Diaz the fighter.

I was always impressed with his skills. He has slick jiu-jitsu and he has really worked on his boxing and can frustrate any fighter with those long lanky limbs and he possesses under rated power. He has a very tough chin and a heart that will never be called into question. With him I always thought it was his extra-curricular activities that I felt would hold him back. I also felt that it would be difficult for any major promoter to try and build a division around him because you never knew what you would get with him. To say he is a loose cannon is putting it mildly. Once again my beliefs have changed and I certainly feel that Nick Diaz is a fighter that any promotion would be lucky to have on its roster.

Diaz put on a clinic Saturday night, there was absolutely no hint of nervousness, he had more composure than a man who has been in the game a lot longer than he has. Diaz came in with a solid game plan and stuck to it. He utilized his strengths effectively and thoroughly dominated a fighter who I felt would give him all he could handle. I always knew Diaz had the skills to do these things physically and I was happy to see him win but what caught my attention more than anything else was his behavior after the fight and the class and respect he displayed towards Frank Shamrock. April 11th, 2009 is the day I believe we saw Nick Diaz grow up a little.

Now what is next for Diaz? For a man that is only 25 years old he has been in the game almost 8 years with 27 fights under his belt. He has faced some of the best competition in the world. He holds victories over such fighters as Chris Lytle who he defeated in just his second career fight. He has beaten Robbie Lawler, Drew Fickett, Josh Neer, Gleison Tibau, Takanori Gomi (Yes I know it was changed to a no-contest) and now Frank Shamrock. Even his losses are impressive as he taken Sean Sherk, Joe Riggs, Diego Sanchez and Karo Parisyan to the judge’s scorecards. He has been through wars and the future is his for the taking. My question is where does he fight?

While in the UFC he fought as a welterweight and seemed a bit undersized, he fought Gomi at 161lbs and EliteXC designed a lightweight division at 160lbs just for Nick Diaz. He fought Shamrock at a catch-weight of 179lbs and was actually the bigger man. He seems to have filled out nicely and I can see him fighting anywhere from lightweight to middleweight if he so chooses. Strike Force offers up some interesting match-ups for Diaz. A potential rematch with Lawler would be interesting. Lawler is taking on Diaz’ team mate Jake Shields next month at a catch-weight of 182lbs. There is also a rematch with KJ Noons who defeated Diaz for the EliteXC lightweight title because of cuts that Diaz suffered. They were supposed to fight again but Noons refused to fight Diaz and has since moved back to his boxing career.

He could look for some revenge against Joe Riggs after Diesel fights Phil Baroni next month in St. Louis. The possibilities are endless because of his ability to move up and down. There is Josh Thompson the Strike Force light weight champion who defeated Diaz’ team mate Gilbert Melendez for the title, Japanese superstars Kazuo Misaki and Mitsuhiro Ishida and hard hitting Scott Smith are just a few names that would make interesting fights for Diaz. His win over Shamrock opened up so many doors for him. He also opened up opportunities for Strike Force to build not only divisions around him but cards as well. The attendance on Saturday night was over 15,000 and the majority of the fans were there to see him and Shamrock go toe to toe. His performance only brought in new fans for him and also silenced a lot of his critics. He has always been able to promote fights with his trash talking but now he has shown a different side to his persona a side that will draw in many more fans whether they want to see him win or see him get his ass kicked.

16 COMMENTS
  • kidneybeans says:

    What’s next for Nick Diaz? My guess is a lucrative endorsement deal with Prego for that awesome spaghetti windmill attack he displayed the other night.

    I give Diaz a lot of credit for destroying Shamrock, I never thought it would happen. But I wouldn’t say I came away too impressed with his game by any means. I still can’t stand his badass attitude and though he showed a small degree of class after the fight, it’s the fighters that show class before a fight that I cheer for. He has some skills but I don’t see him as a real force in any division. that noodle-armed striking game of his has been exposed in the past and will be again I’m quite sure and he nevers gets to use his awesome jiu-jitsu because everyone knows better than to take him down. Put him up against any of the guys you mentioned and I don’t think we see the same Nick Diaz we did the other night. But I was wrong about his fight with Shamrock so he could definitely surprise me. So for now congratulations to Nick Diaz, but I can’t wait to see him destroyed next time.

  • Stan says:

    “I don’t believe a guy who is an admitted pot smoker and who tends to stir up as much trouble as possible is good for the sport.”

    Tito Ortiz has proven this second point to be incorrect. Being a PPV draw is less about commanding people’s respect than it is commanding their attention.

    And oh no, he does The Drugs! I bet he beats up old people and steals their social security checks to feed his habit! Seriously, the greatest athlete (Michael Phelps) on the planet is a pot head. I don’t remember ever seeing anyone getting up in arms about how Chuck Liddell was bad for the sport when he was out drinking and partying until early morning hours before his fights. But some drugs have more powerful lobbyists than others and have been declared legal, so they must be good for the sport.

    And those energy drinks that made Rampage Jackson see Jesus telling him to run from the cops? Those are super fantastic for the sport too!

  • giftofjab says:

    LOL @ Stan’s comment…

  • s00nertp says:

    +1 on Stan’s comments. funny too.

  • ZP580 says:

    Wow Stan must be a fellow pot head too. The difference between Liddell staying up all night and drinking and Diaz being a pot head is that weed is illegal. Whether u agree with the law or not, it is what it is. As for Rampage, it wasn’t just energy drinks that caused his antics so lets not down play the seriousness of his situation. As for Diaz if he would whether smoke than fight the best at 155 or 170 in the UFC, then thats his choice. He knows he does’t wanna go toe to toe with the likes of Penn, Florian, Sherk, GSP, Alves, or Fitch. Hell I would even pick Huerta, Tyson Griffin or Frankie Edgar over Diaz. Bottom line if Diaz wants to challenge himself, its not gonna happen at StrikeForce. Unless he dares to try Cung Le, Ha ya right.

  • Bullylover says:

    2 KIDNEYBEANS & ZP580 @#$% U GUY’s. What makes you guys think you know what is good for the sport. What the hell was so bad about Rampages position that it’s all right for him to go on highspeeds and nearly hit a pregnant woman. What about that big mouth B.J. Penn and all that smack he said about GSP. That was no class by any means and thank god he was exposed as the Fraud he is. Frank Shamroc/B.J/Rampage have 3 of the biggest mouths in the sport. At least Rampage can back his up though. There are a lot of people who are bad for the sport if you want to talk about illegall narcotics Sherk/Bonnar/Franca/Barnett etc.As far as Cung Le who has he fought that is so tough a fading away shamrock or a nobody tony fryklund. He would get smashed by anybody in the middleweight division now. Who cares about that prettyboy Roger Huerta he left fighting to be a damn calvin klein model I did’t know people still supported that prettyboy. I would also bet anything that Diaz could hang with anybody on your list with the exception of GSP who he isn’t ready for YET. Until then WAR STOCKTON & THE DIAZ BROTHERS

  • Bullylover says:

    Ok maybe I shouldn’t say @#$% U but still you guy’s seem to want to criticize Diaz because he smokes weed and is from the streets but yet don’t want to akwoledge that your faverite fighters aren’t as bad & disrespectful as they are. Diaz will still smash on everybody.

  • MMA-LOGIC says:

    I hope he fights a good fighter thats all. Diaz is great for the sport, a REAL fighter. I’ll watch all of his upcoming fights, even if in his ring entrance he is smoking a bong and chewing on a snickers bar, arm in arm with 2 hookers. Truth is we should never hear or care whether a fighter smokes weed or not or if he likes to party. It has nothing to do with anything. please tell me why it matters?. In my opinion they shouldn’t be tested for anything that isn’t performance enhancing, it is for him to decide on what he does outside of work. If it isn’t cheating why tell everyone and ban the fighter?. Drinking and smoking are by far the biggest causes of death and social disharmony known to man as far as drugs go. Do they test for or frown upon a fighter going to a bar and smoking a cigar?.

    “But it’s illegal”

    Yeah so is jay-walking or littering should we ban a fighter if he does those things.

  • ZP580 says:

    Hey Bullylover. keep it real, Diaz will never be ready for GSP. And little Diaz will never be a lightweight champ. Get off Diaz’s jock, i know Cung Le hasn’t fought anybody, but he would still beat the sh*t outta Diaz. Diaz can’t handle a true striker, Noons proved that. Regardless of what u think or what I think about the use of weed, rules are rules and he wants to fight the top fighters, he knows what he has to do, cuz its not gonna happen at StrikeForce. Im not even a Sherk fan, but I know he would kick the sh*t outta Diaz too. Pretty boy or not, Diaz doesn’t have the stand up to go toe to toe with Huerta. But, c’mon dont knock him cuz he chose a different career path. BJ and Rampage can’t talk all the trash they want, it’s called marketing. And I think BJ can hold his own just fine. Diaz doesn’t wanna see him in the octagon either. As a matter of fact, Diaz hasn’t fought a legit fighter in over 3 yrs. Oh and F**k U too, ; )

  • kokondo says:

    Nick Diaz is good for Strikeforce – Example- I didn’t care about this fight until I saw the press conference picture of him with his middle finger is Shamrock’s face. Made my friend Tivo it so I could be sure I would watch. Diaz is one of the only fighters that treats this ‘game’ like brutal, in your face combat sport that is. I love his passion – WAR Diaz

  • kidneybeans says:

    Bullylover………..UHHHHHHHHH I’m not sure why I was included in your little lunatic rant given that I never said anything about anyone being bad for the sport . I could care less if the dude smokes weed, I’ve been known to indulge myself a time or two……………..or a few thousand. I don’t like him because he acts like a douche, and thus becomes a bad representative for both mma and respectable cannabis enthusiasts everywhere. And I was somewhat complimentary toward his performance, aside from characterizing his striking as a spaghetti windmill.

    In my original post though I never said anything about Diaz being bad for the sport, I just said I didn’t like him and I wasn’t terribly impressed by him. I don’t think he will be a force in any division let alone three, but that’s just my opinion. And I too will close with the obligatory WAR GEOGRAPHICAL ALLEGIANCE & FAVORITE FIGHTERS!

  • GetItOn says:

    I don’t know if anyone realizes this or not but Nick Diaz is an MMA fighter. He kicks the shiznittal out of people for a living. Those types of people are going to be a little radical. Probably drink, do some drugs. Not all of them necessarily but some of them. As far as Nick Diaz being able to whoop up on anyone in the UFC or any other promotion that he hasn’t fought yet, no one knows until it happens. I think Cung Le would be a good next matchup for him. Just remember though, anything is possible. At this point in time, who really cares about “bad for the sport”. MMA is growing, with or without pot smokers, early morning binge drinkers and potty mouths with dirty middle fingers. Sooner or later the vast majority of the population in the world will be a fan of MMA one way or another. muahahahahahah

  • GetItOn says:

    BTW, people are talking about Huerta because he has one fight left on his contract. He’s not free yet.

  • jdesko23 says:

    I had a huge response about weed typed out, then I figured I would just go smoke a bowl and watch some PRIDE dvd’s.

    Would you rather drive with a drunk driver or a stoned driver?

    Smoking weed has nothing to do with how Diaz or any other professional fighter fights. They aren’t toking up right before they walk to the cage, and they aren’t trying to promote smoking weed to little kids. If anything it’ll make them a little more sluggish. (by ‘they’ I mean any pro fighter that happens to indulge himself in the occasional j).

    Basically…….who gives a shit if they smoke.

  • Nerdis22 says:

    “jdesko23” i thought that Nick Diaz said that he got baked in his hotel room before every fight he had in the UFC?

    Not that i really care, because the last thing i wanna do when im blazing is go in front of 15,000 people and fight some dude. I gotta hand it too Diaz, he’s true working man’s stoner, if more stoner’s could get high and perform at a top notch level, it might not have such bad name.

    Nick Diaz you are a hero to all us stoner’s out there keep up the good work

  • BJG1 says:

    So when Rampage or Penn talks crap it’s marketing, but Diaz is considered a punk when he does it? Diaz has fought who in his career? Last time I checked his opponents are top in the world down the entire list and he has never been stopped by any of them. Can’t say the same for a lot of the others listed above. Joe Rogan named Diaz as one of the best pound for pound fighters in the world. Top 5 I believe and I am not sure if he like Nick. Bas Ruten (sp?) who is a world renown fighter in his own right was shocked when they took the win over Gomi away from Nick. He stated that it is more of a disadvantage then advantage. Lets just look at facts if we are going to argue a point here.

    I personally don’t think anyone should do ANY drugs … but again lets not judge one and not the other an though the laws very on marijuana if you want to get technical on the law I am sure Liddel (and others) have broken public intoxication laws and driving while drunk laws if I had to guess. The only difference I really see between Nick and some others are other fighter talk trash and speak out to other fighters but Nick will do it to anyone even Mr White. That’s just a guess as I have no real incite on that. If you watch either Diaz brother in ANY of their fights .. they always show almost a HATE for their opponent before the fight. Hell Nate wouldn’t tap guys gloves between rounds … but after the fight they always respect the man if they put up a good fight because no matter who they fight. You don’t let your guard down in a war but after the war is over you don’t beat the hostages and kill them.

    I like how people talk about Nick being BAD for the sport or not being respectful. Yea those same people are the ones Sh*t faced at the arenas swearing and yelling at Nick or other fighters they don’t like spitting at people and spilling beer and alcohol everywhere … and yea probably hit some weed too. I mean that doesn’t hurt the sport at all … Nick Diaz does FAR more damage tha thousands of fans behaving like that. Part of the reason Nick probably mentions he loves fighting in Japan over the US because he mentioned how respectful they are there and f you are a real MMA fan you have seen him fight over there and see how he respects the fans and their culture.

    We are all human and we all have our faults and I hope Diaz gets a chance to fight some UFC fighters because believe it or not just as Microsoft doesn’t have all the best computer software … UFC doesn’t have all the best fighters no matter how hard Dana works to monopolize the sport.
    Real fighters will fight anyone anytime. I’ve never seen Diaz turn a fight down so I hope they let him fight.

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