Even though they’ve stripped him of the title, the door is not yet closed on KJ Noons’ relationship with Elite XC. The company reportedly gave Noons a Monday deadline to determine whether, and under what circumstances, he’ll continue to work for them. After all this drama it’s hard to imagine that we’ll be seeing Noons back in the Elite XC cage unless he gets a significant pay raise. Even then, you have to wonder what they would do with their ex-lightweight champ.
He refused to fight Nick Diaz even though it’s the only bout for him with any real heat at the moment. His manager, Mark Dion, said previously that the fight Noons really wants is one with Eddie Alvarez. Trouble is, rumors are now circulating that it will be Diaz who faces Alvarez for the vacant Elite XC title. Now that’s got to sting if you’re Noons. Not only does Diaz get more money, he also gets the fight KJ wants and maybe even his belt. What’s next, his bike?
If that happens, Noons can wait out the Diaz-Alvarez bout, hoping that Alvarez wins and he’ll finally get his shot at him. Even then, there’s still the sticky issue of money to sort out. If Diaz pulls out the victory Noons will be almost forced into a rematch with him for the belt that was his to begin with.
After everything that’s happened, however, it seems more likely that Noons is looking for the door at this point. He still has two fights on his contract, though he could decide to focus on boxing for a while in the hopes that Elite XC will crumble and he’ll be free and clear to sign a new MMA deal when they do. That is, assuming there is an organization who will be willing to pay him what he thinks he’s worth even after he’s been out of the game for a while.
Sounds like refusing a much-hyped rematch on network TV maybe wasn’t the best career move after all. Weird.