It was supposed to be a regular pre-fightpresserfor a main event happening over a month and a half away. What took place was so far from the norm, you’ll probably never see it happen again. The UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre was supposed to sit alongside his opponent Nick Diaz but the former Strikeforce Welterweight champion was a no-show.
Since Monday the UFC has been trying to get Diaz on a plane for a media tour in Canada and Las Vegas, where today’s press conference was held. Three missed flights and $15,000 later Diaz was MIA and the UFC was forced to make a change.
“The Natural Born Killer” Carlos Condit will now face Georges St-Pierre for the Welterweight title at UFC 137 in Las Vegas, Nev. on Oct. 29. Condit was already slated to fight on the same card against BJ Penn in the night’s co-main event. With Condit moving up to the main event that leaves Penn without an opponent at this time.
“The timing was perfect for this to all come together,” Condit stated with excitement in his voice. “First I want to thank the UFC for allowing me this opportunity and also my agent Malki Kawa who saw an opening and took advantage of it. With me already fighting on that card, I will need to make some adjustments to get ready for a new opponent, but my actual training is still right on schedule.”
At the time of the press conference Condit was on a plane heading to Vegas to complete to final days of this media blitz.
“It’s an honor to be able to fight for the championship, especially against one of the legends of our sport in Georges St-Pierre. I’ve been fighting for nearly a decade and there has been a lot of blood, sweat and tears that has gone into that. A lot of sacrifices have been made both personally and professionally, and I’m looking forward to showing the UFC that I am deserving of this opportunity,” Condit added.
A visibly upset Dana White broke the news during the “Champion vs. Champion” UFC 137 press conference that saw St. Pierre sitting alone to the right of White. The UFC President had no clue where Diaz was and even Caesar Gracie (Diaz’s manager) who called White during the press conference didn’t know where he was.
It’s yet another bizarre episode in a long line of bizarre events from Nick Diaz. One that will cost him and most likely land him on the outside, looking in on the UFC and Strikeforce.
Quotes courtesy of the Carlos Condit press release.
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