In an interview with GracieFighter.com, Dana White discussed the drama of last week with Nick Diaz and how he offered up BJ Penn to Diaz.
“I called Cesar and said, ‘What would you think about Nick and B.J. Penn?’ And Cesar said, ‘If you’re offering us that fight, we’ll take it.’ To tell you the truth, the excuses he gave me made no sense. You’ve interviewed Nick Diaz before. You know what I’m talking about. But I started thinking about this: This kid is a real fighter and I love the BJ Penn-Nick Diaz fight. He always does show up to fight. We have trouble with him doing p.r. We also sometimes have problems with [his brother] Nate, whom I have a great relationship with, in getting him to do his p.r. What basically happened is, Nick freaked out. He disappeared. He told me he couldn’t handle the pressure of the main event. It wasn’t that he couldn’t fight it or wouldn’t have fought it, but all the responsibilities that come with fighting in the main event, he said he couldn’t deal with that. The fighting part is the easy part to him.”
Diaz is lucky he’s somewhat of a draw, because pulling that should have got him released. But, if Diaz should somehow defeat Penn, Dana will once again have the same problem. Will Diaz show up for THAT title fight? Who knows? But if he doesn’t, he’ll be cut.
It is widely speculated that the winner between Chael Sonnen and Brian Stann is next in line to face Anderson Silva. But not if you ask Michael Bisping. In an interview with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, Bisping said, “I think it’s complete bullshit [that he would get the next shot]. Chael Sonnen, who just fought the champ, cheated and took steroids…I think I am next in line. Ideal scenario would be beat Miller, get a title shot, win the world title.” Honestly if Stann wins, I’d give it to him. But if Stann loses and Bisping wins, then Bisping should get the shot. Fair is fair, and those two guys have put in the work, and like Bisping said, Sonnen is a dirty cheater. He should at least have to beat one other person.
Daniel Cormier posted on Twitter that his hand was in fact broken in his win over Antonio Silva. “Just got done seeing doctor. Hand is broken [and I] will be on the shelf for a while. Still looking forward to finishing the tourney. Thanks for the support.” Cormier’s management is saying he’ll be out six to eight weeks and could return to training by late October. Well, that should give him plenty of time to train for Josh Barnett, since the finals are tentatively set to end sometime early 2012. Still, he could use all the time he could get, because Barnett has a ton of experience and will pose a great threat.
With UFC Fight Night 25 airing live on Spike TV at 9PM ET this Saturday night, Bellator officials have announced that Bellator 50 is being moved up, airing at 7PM ET on MTV2 instead of it’s normal timeslot, with the Spike.com preliminary card will streaming at 5PM ET. Smart move, especially since it seems they gained back some of the audience they had previously lost with last week’s Bellator 49 event.
ESPN.com is reporting that Jon Fitch is set to return to the Octagon on December 30 at UFC 141 in Las Vegas, NV, where he will meet Johny Hendricks. This has the makings of the most boring fight in UFC history. Not because Hendricks is in it. Hendricks will push forward. But since both of these guys are wrestlers, and Fitch’s refusal to strike with anyone, this fight will be contested on the ground without much damage to either fighter. As you can tell, I’m thinking Fitch will be the one on top. But if Hendricks could pull off the upset, it’ll go a long way at vaulting him up the welterweight ladder.