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MMA Analysis: Is the Welterweight Division Cursed?

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You have to start to wonder whether the UFC welterweight division or its champion Georges St-Pierre has a curse laid upon them. Never in the history of MMA has there been so much ill-gotten press surrounding a particular weight class as there has been in regards to the UFC welterweight division, in just this year alone.

First, (and I’m just going to go back a couple of months here), there was the press conference debacle with Nick Diaz, when he failed to appear at the necessary press events to promote his then title shot against GSP at UFC 137. Nick was stripped of his shot at the belt, and he was demoted to the under card of the same event to fight BJ Penn, all while watching Carlos Condit get elevated into the headlining spot. Diaz took his fight with Penn, only to hear that St-Pierre would be withdrawing from his bout with Condit due to a knee injury.

OK, now here is where it starts to get interesting. Nick and BJ get promoted to the main event of UFC 137, they put on a great show, Diaz gets the win, and then in a sudden and strange turn of events, Nick is presented with yet another shot at Georges St-Pierre as the main event for UFC 143 in February. As if it weren’t confusing enough, Carlos Condit was thought to be the next in line regardless of the outcome of Diaz/Penn.

Well, as we all know now, that didn’t happen. Nick made enough noise in the Penn bout to knock Condit into the backseat, again. Undaunted, Carlos accepted a fight against Josh Koscheck in an attempt to stay busy and relevant in the overall picture at 170 lbs. It’s odd that I would even broach the topic of things getting wilder in the division, but sometimes when it rains it pours.

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Wednesday it was announced that UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre would be sidelined for the better part of 2012 due to the same nagging knee injury that required him to step away from his initial bout with Condit back in October. UFC president Dana White revealed that St-Pierre had actually blown his ACL in his knee, keeping him out of action at least the next ten months. White also revealed that the new main event for UFC 143 has now been changed to Nick Diaz vs. Carlos Condit

The newly confirmed match-up will be for the interim UFC welterweight championship. We have all seen the types of scenarios that interim belts have set up in the past in other weight classes, and it usually makes the situations more confusing than they already are, but at least the rest of the division will not have to wait around for GSP to get healthy. Let’s hope that Georges gets better quick, so he can get back inside the cage and clear up this mess ASAP.

Check out more from James Begley at jbstaredownmma.com

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