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Diego Sanchez Returns to Welterweight Division at UFC 114 Against John Hathaway

(This is why you should always wear a helmet when doing yes cartwheels.)

After his run at the UFC’s lightweight title ended in bloody failure, Diego Sanchez has decided to recommit himself to his most successful weight class. On Tuesday, the Nightmare confirmed via Twitter that he is indeed returning to welterweight, and will be taking on undefeated British prospect John Hathaway at UFC 114 (May 29th; Las Vegas). Sporting a 12-0 overall record, Hathaway made his Octagon debut last January with a first-round TKO over Thomas Egan, and followed it up with unanimous decision wins over Rick Story and Paul Taylor. The kid’s got moxie, but he’s never fought anybody on Sanchez’s level. Our advice? Try to do exactly what BJ Penn did.

UFC 114 is tentatively being headlined by the long-delayed grudge match between Rashad Evans and Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. Other rumored fights on the card include:

Forrest Griffin vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueria, which was originally slated for UFC 113 in Montreal, but has apparently been pushed back three weeks.

Todd Duffee vs. Mike Russow; both fighters are looking to pick up their second wins in the UFC. Due to a back injury suffered in November, Duffee hasn’t competed since his seven-second knockout of Tim Hague at UFC 102. Russow also made his UFC debut at #102, earning a unanimous decision over Justin McCully.

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easy11019- February 5, 2010 at 5:09 pm
How embarrassing for Diego; it seems he got his first forehead period and on the night of the big fight no less!

robthom- February 5, 2010 at 9:41 am
Diego lost something that rocketed him through every contender in his way fresh out of tuf after he left Jacksons.

He hasn't been the same since.

It doesn't matter what weight he runs to or how many times he yesses himself, he needs to find a new home team that can take the place of whatever Jackson's was doing for him.
iDestroy- February 5, 2010 at 7:29 am
I wanted to see a Diego/kenflo rematch before he ran away. Shame.
Dizzylittlelord- February 4, 2010 at 9:15 pm
that goats vagina that got opened up on his forehead kind of goes with the second asshole that Bj tore him, hes going to get decisioned by fitch and then drop into obscurity within a year
Jubbie- February 4, 2010 at 8:35 pm
The move really makes no sense for Diego. I also don't think Hathaway's ready for this fight so he's just a tool for Diego to ease into the division before he hits a wall of bigger stronger fighters again.
mma samurai- February 4, 2010 at 6:43 pm
I don't mind Diego going to WW that's fine and his choice but I think he should have given LW more of a try. If every guy who lost to BJ left the division then it litterally would be cleaned out. There would be BJ and Gray Maynard pussyfooting around stepping up to fight him. I think if Diego gave it some more time LW could be good for him. It didn't slow him down any making that cut and at least he's willing to bang and go for the kill as opposed to a good chunk of the LW division. I think it was a rash/bitch move to leave the division so quickly but hey it's his career. There's no shame in a loss to BJ
Keyser Soze- February 4, 2010 at 6:03 pm
He ran from welterweight because he simply couldn't dominate the top contenders like he planned, and would've looked like an amateur against GSP.

So he runs to lightweight, and though he had a bit of success there, he ran into a far superior fighter in Penn. His solution is to go back up to welterweight? Good luck with that Diego, you're going to need it.

I don't know about the UFC's plans for GSP/welterweight division, but there's a lot going on in that division right now. Nate Diaz vs Sanchez would've been a good matchup to start off their roads to redemption at welterweight.

As for GSP, he's not going to be able to compete at WW much longer, soon he'll be too big for the weight class.
los_Hated- February 4, 2010 at 5:11 pm
Dont underestimate Diego....Sure he got treated like a doll by Penn but he deserves another shot even if its at 170. He definitely needs to prove himself.....YES!
DazedNConfused- February 4, 2010 at 4:40 pm
I dont think Sanchez has a chance of winning the title at 170, even if GSP leaves the division. You gotta be shitting me that Deigo can beat people like Alves, Koshcheck, and even Dan Hardy (LOL). Diego, with his now deflated ego will most likely even lose this up and coming fight. That's the way she goes ladies and gentlemen.
Nut Puncher 9000- February 4, 2010 at 3:27 pm
So Sanchez goes immediately back to WW.

That is a powerful statement people. That is FEAR.
steampunk22- February 4, 2010 at 3:15 pm
jimbonics- February 4, 2010 at 2:46 pm
"Since the back-to-back losses Sanchez has rededicated himself to the study of Jiu-jitsu, under the Ribiero brothers. He has also resumed his winning ways in the UFC, picking up victories over David Bielkheden and Luigi Fioravanti. Once more Sanchez is at the cusp of a title shot, as he awaits a match with Thiago Alves at UFC 90. "

You guys need help updating your wiki or something? Is linking to illegal?
superflat- February 4, 2010 at 2:23 pm
UFC 114 is shaping up to be a funny card, in that Griffin/Nogueria fight features the better fighters, but will only be the co-main event. I guess it's debatable, but Nogueria's looking to be on the up-and-up right now, while Rashad is ho-hum and Rampage is... well, Rampage.
steampunk22- February 4, 2010 at 2:16 pm
I'm a little surprised Sanchez followed through with this, I think its more of an emotional decision, he lost in pretty devastating fashion. Obviously thats just speculation on my part, but I think Penn sort of put the fear of god into Sanchez in a bad way and Sanchez wants out of the division ASAP.

He's had success in both divisions so we'll see what happens I guess, but running away from BJ Penn into the arms of Georges St Pierre doesn't seem like the smartest move. Unless GSP moves up of course.....
Get Off Me- February 4, 2010 at 2:15 pm
Diego was not powerful at 155, did not finish any fights there, he's more powerful at 170.
@mma samurai + DazednConfused
GSP is leaving the WW title behind soon, Diego will have as good a chance as anybody at that point to become champ, in my humble opinion.

It's a good/smart move for Diego and like mybong said he's an interesting fighter to watch. If every fighter in the UFC looked at the title shot in their weight class as a reason to stick around(as of today) there would be very few good fighters left in the UFC.
mybongsnameisgreenmeenie- February 4, 2010 at 1:59 pm
i dont care what class he fights in, his fights are fun to watch, and for that, i will always enjoy seeing deigo fight.
El Famous Burrito- February 4, 2010 at 1:57 pm
Fuck that. Skip right over welterweight and balloon all the way up to heavyweight, Diego.

Come on, who doesn't want to see a short, rotund Mexican doing Yes Cartwheels while following a donut down a hill?

That's UFC Primetime gold, right there.
TheFactor- February 4, 2010 at 1:46 pm

@mma samurai ... that was a pretty big/bad loss though.

No amounts of creepy antics and screaming "YES" will bring him back from that one.

DazedNConfused- February 4, 2010 at 1:30 pm
Diego is a bitch. Atleast he was a powerful 155. I don't see him going back up to 170 really doing much. He may win, hell he may even fluke out and get to a title shot, but then he's just going to get assraped by St. Pierre, just like he did by Penn. Oh well.
mma samurai- February 4, 2010 at 1:25 pm
Wow one loss in the division and he tucks tail and runs away back to another division he has no chance of winning the title in. Go Diego Go!!!