The future has never looked brighter for current Strikeforce Welterweight Champion Nick Diaz, but just what does that future hold? Diaz most recently won his headlining bout at Strikeforce’s “Diaz vs. Noons 2” event, which saw him defeat arch-rival KJ Noons and even out the score after Noons famously defeated him three years ago to win the now-defunct EliteXC Lightweight Championship via a controversial doctor stoppage due to a cut. In a new post-fight interview, the always-controversial Diaz talked about what he sees himself doing in the immediate as well as the not-so-immediate future.
Here are the highlights of an interview posted on the YouTube channel of FIGHT! Magazine: “I want to get on to fighting some more important people… I want to fight the best in the world. If you don’t think I’m the best in the world, then bring me the best in the world. I want to fight Georges St. Pierre. I think he’s the best… If you don’t think I’m the best, then let me fight this guy… I would like to fight at 155-pounds… I can make that weight. 185? I’ll fight at that weight. I just want to be paid for it. I want someone to offer me the fight…I can do it all, I’d just like to get paid for it… How do these guys expect to beat me? Who’s out there?”
I think big, big things are in store for Nick Diaz. First and foremost, I absolutely believe that Diaz is crazy enough to seriously go after winning gold in three weight divisions. They simply don’t make fighters much more competitive than Nick Diaz. His victory over Noons unquestionably makes him one of Strikeforce’s best assets, and look to see him headline many more cards going into the future.
As far as his immediate plans go, I think Diaz will stick to Welterweight and bounce up to Middleweight once every few fights. I don’t see Diaz dropping back down to Lightweight in Strikeforce, at least until his teammate and close friend Gilbert Melendez is defeated and a new Strikeforce Lightweight Champion is crowned. If Diaz can put on the right amount of weight, he may have it in him to win the Strikeforce Middleweight Championship. We may be looking at a two-division champion before 2011 is through, it would by no means be the craziest thing to have happened in recent history. It does seem a bit unlikely, even with Diaz’s skills, but by no means is it outside the realm of possibility.
Unfortunately, a fight with GSP is definitely outside the realm of possibility until Diaz jumps ship and re-joins the UFC. The UFC is done co-promoting, now that they’re the unequivocal leader in Mixed Martial Arts they have no reason to. But if it does ever happen, you heard it here first: I think Nick Diaz may be the one to beat Georges St. Pierre. Diaz’s striking is better, and GSP’s vaunted takedowns will put Diaz exactly where he wants to be: on the ground and on his back, working for submissions. It seems like a far-off fantasy that anyone will beat GSP nowadays, but if this fight ever materialized I’d be pulling for Nick with every ounce I had to give.
But no matter what happens, Nick Diaz can look forward to some big things in 2011. His stock in Strikeforce continues to rise, and the quality of his opponents will benefit from that immeasurably. Putting it plainly: Nick Diaz has arrived, once and for all.
And what do you think, fans and friends? What does the future hold for Nick Diaz, and how do you feel about his chances at 155, 185, and against GSP?