Many MMA fans were impressed by Nick Diaz’ performance against BJ Penn at UFC 137, and so were Ultimate Fighting Championship matchmakers. WEC import Carlos Condit will no longer face current welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre in his next title defense, and Diaz has been pushed back into the number one contender spot. GSP will now face Diaz in his next title defense which is expected to take place on Super Bowl weekend in 2012.
According to UFC officials, Condit agreed to step aside for Diaz, but his manager Malki Kawa quickly fired back, telling MMAWeekly.com, “We didn’t step aside. That’s not what we do; GSP doesn’t want to fight Carlos.”
GSP and Condit are both affiliated with MMA trainer Greg Jackson, and it will be interesting to see where their relationship goes from here.
While Condit fans might be bummed out by the decision, the UFC made the right call, given the fact Diaz was originally scheduled to face GSP at UFC 137 before getting demoted for failing to attend consecutive press conferences leading up to the event.
Condit will now end up exactly where he was before getting promoted due to Diaz’ behavior and he’ll fight on Super Bowl weekend for a shot at the UFC’s welterweight title.
While I understand how frustrated Condit must feel right now, the UFC did the right thing by giving Diaz the title shot. Diaz looked impressive against BJ Penn at UFC 137, and there is no question most MMA fans would rather see the Stockton native take on GSP.
Diaz is skilled enough to test GSP like no one has in quite some time, and UFC fans will be in for a treat when the two MMA fighters meet inside the Octagon. With a potential to have Anderson Silva vs. Chael Sonnen and Diaz vs. GSP on the same fight card, 2012 is already looking like a good year for the UFC.