Tarec Saffiedine spend the better half of the final 25 minutes of Strikeforce’s history reducing former champion Nate Marquardt’s leg into nothing more than a kick stand. Per usual, the fighters embraced and congratulated each other after the tilt, and that was the last fans saw of the due.
Recently in an interview, President of Alchemist MMA Lex McMahon told a story about an interaction between the two fighters that happened off-camera reminding the MMA community sportsmanship is alive and well in mixed martial arts.
McMahon relayed to BJPenn.com:
“Nate had to receive medical attention in the dressing room and he was laying down on the floor keeping his leg elevated because he couldn’t walk. I was outside communicating with the Strikeforce PR team trying to figure out the logistics of getting Nate to the press conference because he honestly couldn’t walk.”
“As I was outside talking to the PR people, Tarec came up to me and said ‘hey Lex, can I talk to Nate?’ I poked my head in and told Nate that Tarec would like to talk to him and Nate told me to bring him in. Tarec now obviously has the belt, he’s got it on his shoulder but he’s such a classy athlete and a person that he didn’t walk into Nate’s dressing room with the belt. He put the belt down just outside of Nate’s door out of his eyesight, he walked in, bowed down, grabbed Nate’s hand and said some very complimentary things and called Nate a great champion. I just thought that personified who Tarec Saffiedine is as a person and what’s best about mixed martial arts. Hats off to Tarec Saffiedine, he’s a great fighter and he earned that belt.”