It is hard to get punished in the UFC, especially when you are Nick Diaz. Diaz was disciplined for no-showing press conferences by being pulled from the UFC 137 main event. Yet Ironically, he now has an even bigger chance to make more money than he would have made before.
This whole Georges St-Pierre vs. Nick Diaz mess is one of the most confusing stories I have ever seen in professional sports. The fight had the potential to not only be the biggest UFC fight of the year, but possibly ever. Yet the fight was canceled when Diaz didn’t show up for two press conferences. As strange as it was to cancel such a blockbuster fight over a meaningless press conference, the follow up has been even stranger.
As strange as these moves have been, the strangest of all may have come this week when Dana White said that Diaz would get a title shot at the GSP vs. Carlos Condit UFC welterweight title fight winner if he beats Penn. So wait a second? Diaz will now have a chance to reintroduce himself to the UFC audience with a big win over a UFC star, thus increasing the money he will make for the fight that was pulled away from him because he was “punished?” That is exactly what the boss has in mind.
Dana was asked by the folks at MMAWeekly.com flat out if Diaz beats Penn if he would get the next shot. Guess who isn’t getting punished?
“Yeah. Listen who knows, I don’t see that happening (no-showing the press conference) again. If it does, I don’t even know what to say. Than it is what it is.”
Huh? So now I circle back and ask why the heck aren’t the UFC fans getting the fight they were promised in the first place? If it is now a “it is what it is” situation regarding the press conference, why are we going through this whole charade of changing the UFC 137 card around? I know the answer that Dana would give you, “because he can” but this all just doesn’t pass the smell test to me.
Plenty of UFC fighters don’t like talking to the press. I understand it, but according to the company it is part of their jobs. So what is to stop Brock Lesnar or anyone else from not showing up to a press conference if they aren’t interested? The fear of being punished with a semi-main event? Give me a break!
Or maybe Penn spoils everyone’s party and defeats Nick Diaz? I can’t imagine a more motivated fighter right now than BJ Penn who has to be insulted at this point about being put into the position of stepping stone. Dana White is playing the ultimate gamble right now and all it takes is one BJ Penn to win ruin the party and cost the company millions of dollars that they chose to leave on the table.
This is about as dumb as rewarding someone who fails a drug test and pleads guilty to a felony with a championship match & the biggest payday of their life after one win in fourteen months. Wait a minute!
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