(“…and I want water made from the iceberg the Titanic hit and….”)
When Strikeforce announced over the weekend that Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos, who lost to Nick Diaz in his last fight in January, would be facing Paul Daley – Diaz’s last victim – on SF’s July 30 card, it was surprising to hear murmurs that the winner might take home the promotion’s vacant strap for a number of reasons.
For one, both men are coming off losses. Sure they were to Diaz, who was as dominant of a champion as Strikeforce has ever known, but why not make them earn a shot at the title like everyone else. You could argue that undefeated Tyron Woodley, (who we were told by a source close to Daley a few days prior to Santos being pulled from his bout with Tarec Saffiedine to instead face the brash Brit was Semtex’s original opponent) deserves a shot before either fighter.
Secondly, why should Daley and Santos get back-to-back title shots? Doesn’t that somehow cheapen the belt and make it a runners up prize? Why not just give it to the second place finisher then like they do with the Miss America title when the winner is unable to fulfill her duties?
Anyway, Daley is of the opinion somehow that he thinks he deserves to immediately fight for the belt again, like a do-over is common in MMA championship bouts.
“Nothing’s been said but, to me, it makes sense,” Daley said ESPN ‘s UFC Podcast. “Nick Diaz vacates the title, we were the last two guys to contend for the Strikeforce welterweight title, so it’s the only thing that makes sense to me. I would suggest, if I was promoting it, that the next fight is for the title.”
He would also like to suggest that he be allowed back in the UFC and be given a coaching gig on season 15 of The Ultimate Fighter opposite Josh Koscheck in spite of Dana White’s assertion that he will never fight for the Zuffa-owned promotion again. Can’t balame a guy for tryin’.
“[TUF] would be good! That would be very interesting. Would Dana White let it happen? I doubt it. I don’t mind TV, I don’t mind going up against Koscheck,” he explained. “My season would definitely be interesting because I say things how they are. I don’t play up for the cameras. It would be funny.”
If White doesn’t go for that suggestion, Daley says he’s got many more suggestions about how he should run his business that involve him being given plenty of big opportunities.
“I want a Diaz rematch. If Diaz loses to GSP and my fight’s for the title, I’ll get the title and then use it to line up a rematch with Diaz. I know it’s within my power to beat Diaz. It sounds stupid because I lost to him, but had I not have got caught with a certain shot around the two-minute mark, I wouldn’t have been fighting on instinct and the fight would have been a lot different,” he said. “He had the ability, the skill or the fortune to land that shot to the temple, which I couldn’t recover from with the pace he was setting.”
As far as his loss to Diaz, Daley sees the finish a lot differently than pretty much everyone else. He maintains that, in spite of the close-up that clearly showed him wobbly and stunned sitting on the stool and asking what the hell happened after eating a slew of shots from Diaz that saw Big John McCarthy step in and save him from taking more damage, he wasn’t in trouble and likely would have recovered sufficiently to mount a come-from-behind win.
“A different ref, a different day… we’ve recently seen the Jose Aldo versus Mark Hominick fight, we’ve seen the Shane Carwin v Junior Dos Santos fight. Those guys were in far greater trouble than I was and the fight was allowed to go on. John McCarthy refereed the Hominick fight and let it continue, but he was different with me. He stopped it with three seconds to go, yet when I landed six shots after Diaz face-planted he didn’t even bat an eyelid. There’s frustration about that because I think McCarthy is a good ref, but there is no consistency. If you’re gonna let a fight continue when Hominick’s got a big f***ing lump on his head and on numerous times he’s in bad spots, you can’t stop a championship shot with three seconds to go. I had my guard up, I was kicking Diaz’s legs… had Herb Dean been refereeing I think the fight would have been allowed to continue.”
Sure, buddy. Keep telling yourself that.
As far as regretting the punch he threw at Koscheck, Daley obviously hasn’t learned how to “play the game” like Diaz.
“[The punch ] is a bit hard to comment on, but I would have thought I could have thrown a better punch and knocked him out, given that Koscheck wasn’t expecting it.