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Tag: Nick Diaz

Shields/Fickett Fight Canceled Again; Diaz Booked For DREAM.3

Nick Diaz UFC
(Our thoughts exactly.)

I would take this as a clear sign that EliteXC’s welterweight belt is cursed by poltergeists and refuses to be possessed by mortals.

The championship fight between top 170-pound contender Jake Shields and challenger Drew Fickett for EliteXC’s vacant welterweight title has been postponed for a second time, as it was announced today that Fickett has injured his knee and will not be able to compete at EliteXC’s June 14th event in Honolulu, Hawaii. The two fighters were originally supposed to meet at “Shamrock vs. Le” on March 29th, but Shields pulled a muscle in his back days before the event, and Fickett took on Jae Suk Lim instead, winning by guillotine choke in the first round. Luckily, Shields doesn’t seem to be too disappointed by Fickett’s injury, as his back may not be 100% recovered yet anyway. As he told MMAWeekly:

“I think I could be okay to fight by (June 14), but I think opting for July would probably be the smartest thing. It would give me more time to rehab before jumping into sparring, and I think there would be a little more exposure with it being on CBS (in July).”

The June 14th card still features K.J. Noons defending his lightweight title against Yves Edwards, as well as fights between Nick Diaz and Muhsin Corbbrey, Murilo “Ninja” Rua vs. Tony Bonello, Rafael Feijao vs. Wayne Cole, and Ron Waterman vs. Dave Herman.

Speaking of Diaz, the pot-abusing lightweight has joined the lineup of DREAM.3 (May 11th; Saitama, Japan), where he’ll take on Katsuya Inoue, a two-time welterweight King of Pancrase with a career record of 16-5-3. Reportedly, the winner of that fight will face Hayato Sakurai for DREAM’s welterweight title in July or September. (I guess not all the belts will be awarded via chaotic grand prix.) With this addition, DREAM.3′s mighty, mighty lineup is looking like this:

Lightweight GP Round 2
Tatsuya Kawajiri vs. Luis Buscape
Joachim Hansen vs. Eddie Alvarez
Mitsuhiro Ishida vs. Caol Uno
Katsuhiko Nagata vs. [whoever fills in for Shinya Aoki]

Middleweight GP Round 1 Fight
Jason Miller vs. Katsuyori Shibata

Middleweight GP Reserve Fight
Melvin Manhoef vs. Kim Dae Won

Nick Diaz vs. Katsuya Inoue (welterweights)

Jung Bukyung vs. Daisuke Nakamura (lightweights)

Takeshi Yamazaki vs. TBA (featherweights)


Frank Trigg Booked for DREAM Middleweight GP; Nick Diaz Rumored for Lightweight Feature?


DREAM has updated the official card for their second event (April 29th; Saitama, Japan), with seven fights of the upcoming middleweight tournament already locked down. The biggest surprise is the addition of Frank Trigg, who will be taking on Brazilian Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza (7-1). Trigg, who we consider to be the #9 middleweight in the world, most recently competed at HDNet Fights: Reckless Abandon (12/15/07), where he submitted Edwin Dewees in the first round. The other six fights booked for DREAM’s middleweight GP are:

Denis Kang vs. Gegard Mousasi
Ikuhisa “Minowaman” Minowa vs Kin Taiei
Kazushi Sakuraba (depending on traffic) vs. Andrews Nakahara
Kiyoshi Tamura vs. Masakatsu Funaki
Magomed Sultanakhmadov vs. Zelg Galesic
Yoon Dong Sik vs. Shungo Oyama

Other fighters rumored to fill out the eighth and final tourney fight include Yoshihiro Akiyama (who has been battling injuries), Daniel Acacio, Dae Won Kim, and Mamed Khalidov. DREAM.2 will also feature the do-over match between Shinya Aoki and Gesias Calvancante, to decide who will advance to round two of the lightweight GP on May 11th. In addition, GracieFighter.com is saying that Nick Diaz has verbally accepted a DREAM.2 fight against Marcelo Garcia, a former competitive grappler who lost his pro MMA debut last October at a K-1 HERO’s event. However, Garcia has reportedly backed out of the fight, and a new opponent may not be found for Diaz.


EliteXC on CBS: Eggs, Meet Basket

(Kimbo and “Crush”: And then what? Slice photo courtesy of Esther Lin.)

CBS recently announced that they’ve set July 26th as the date for the second installment of EliteXC’s Saturday Night Fights. Coming less than two months after SNF‘s debut broadcast on May 31st, the scheduling feels premature for a couple of reasons:

1) What if, God forbid, the first show is a ratings disaster? I don’t know if CBS has the power to immediately end their agreement with EliteXC if that happened, but they’d certainly be wise to postpone the next event for a couple more months, reassess what went wrong, and spend more time publicizing their new product.

2) When you stack a card with your two biggest stars (Kimbo Slice, Gina Carano), and fill it out with a few more of your most popular fighters (Robbie Lawler, Phil Baroni, Scott Smith, James Thompson), who’s left to fight eight weeks later? Even if Kimbo and Gina are physically capable of competing again so soon, would casual viewers be interested in seeing another event with the same headliners? Could exciting new opponents be found for them in such a short time-frame? Who’s going to carry card #2?

If you answered Nick Diaz, Jake Shields, KJ Noons, and Yves Edwards — well, you’re wrong. It turns out that all four of those mid-level stars have been booked for EliteXC’s June 14th show in Honolulu. Diaz will face Muhsin Corbbrey, Shields will take on Drew Fickett in EliteXC’s first welterweight title fight, and Noons and Edwards will meet in a lightweight championship bout. Sounds like a killer card, right? It seems like Pro Elite’s best move would be to cancel the Hawaii show and move all the fights to July 26th. Sure, Diaz might be a risk with his medical marijuana routine, and Noons is reportedly staying off the CBS cards due to mismanagement, but it’s hard to think of many other names that EliteXC has in its roster, other than the aforementioned, that could carry a big show, especially when it’s all but guaranteed that no title fights will be included on the July 26th card. Unless, of course, they set up Kimbo to face someone like Antonio Silva for an ill-advised heavyweight championship match. Was Gary Shaw even thinking this far into the future?

Semi-related: Murilo “Ninja” Rua has been dropped from the May 31st CBS card for undisclosed reasons. His opponent, Phil Baroni, will now be facing Joey Villasenor, who knocked out Ryan Jensen three weeks ago at “Shamrock vs. Le.” The rest of the main card is still as-is.


Illegal Strikes 101 With Herb Dean and Nick Diaz

In advance of the May 31st debut of EliteXC’s Saturday Night Fights, CBS has enlisted referee Herb Dean as well as star fighters Nick Diaz and Jake Shields to make a video focusing on what you won’t be seeing during the broadcast. Watch as Diaz demonstrates a textbook soccer kick and piledriver, while Shields contributes a downward elbow and some fence-grabbing. As the announcer says, “Now you’re ready for ‘CBS Saturday Night Fights’.” If you say so, buddy! More must-see videos after the jump.


Diaz Pulled From Strikeforce Show; Weed to Blame?

(Don’t bother Nick before his morning bong rip.)

The California State Athletic Commission determined Wednesday that Nick Diaz will not be cleared to fight Jae Suk Lim at Saturday’s Strikeforce/EliteXC event. Though CSAC executive officer Armando Garcia claims that Diaz’s medical information wasn’t submitted in time for the fight, Gary Shaw refutes this: “He never mentioned anything about late medicals,” said Shaw. “And if there were late medicals it wasn’t because of Nick Diaz and it wasn’t because of EliteXC.”

Diaz underwent the medical tests required to renew his California fight license on March 10th, and noted his prescription for medical marijuana at the time; this controversial element may be at the heart of the dispute. Said Diaz’s manager Cesar Gracie:

“Nick is a naturalist by heart. He thinks Ritalin is an amphetamine. He thinks that’s really bad for you. People with ADD are kind of hyper, so he has trouble sleeping. He got the medical marijuana card and he takes his pot to go to sleep and be more focused. It’s completely legal in California. Voters voted it in. The commission is actually supposed to obey that, so this will probably open up a legal case…If they’re not even going to allow him to test clean, that doesn’t make sense. That’s overstepping their boundaries.”

Steroids actually help my E.D., but I wouldn’t expect the CSAC to bend their rules just because I have a note from my doctor. According to EliteXC Vice President Jared Shaw, Diaz will return to action on June 14 in Hawaii. As for Saturday, Lim will now fight Drew Fickett, who was also left opponent-less after Jake Shields injured his back. The lineup, as it stands now:

Main Card:
Frank Shamrock vs. Cung Le (for Strikeforce middleweight title)
Gilbert Melendez vs. Gabe Lemley (for Strikeforce lightweight title)
Drew Fickett vs. Jae Suk Lim
Mike Kyle vs. Wayne Cole
Joey Villasenor vs. Ryan Jensen

Luke Stewart vs. Tiki Ghosn
Jesse Jones vs. Jesse Gillespie
Darren Uyenoyama vs. Anthony Figueroa


Diaz & Melendez Fight Updates

We reported last week that Cristiano Marcello was claiming to be Gilbert Melendez‘s opponent when the Strikeforce lightweight champ fights on March 29th, but now it appears that isn’t the case afterall. Strikeforce VP Mike Afromowitz has told MMAJunkie that nothing was signed for a Melendez/Marcello fight, but an opponent for Gilby might be revealed today. This is the third switch in plans for Melendez in the past week and a half – he was originally slated to be part of Dream 1‘s Lightweight Grand Prix, but then revealed he would instead defend his belt at the EliteXC/Strikeforce event “Shamrock vs Cung Le”.

Change has been the norm for Melendez of late. Before all this, he had been scheduled to fight other opponents — Josh Thompson and Jorge Masvidal — but they withdrew due to various injuries. The changes and rumors have been crazy for this guy, so stay tuned for updates in a few hours when Melendez will probably next be slated to headline a WWE event versus Hong-Man Choi — cornered by Rickson Gracie.

Speaking of Gracie, Cesar Gracie’s Graciefighter site is reporting that Nick Diaz will make his return on March 29th against Jae Suk Lim (aka, “The Korean Ice Pick”), the SpiritMC middleweight title holder. This is despite Lim saying after his last fight that he would next fight under ICON Sport. You’ll recall that Nick recently had plastic surgery to fix some of the scar tissue that was built up around his eyes. His volcanic eyeballs were the cause of his last loss — a doctor stoppage against KJ Noons. Well, scar tissue and getting punched in the face a lot were the cause.

“The Korean Ice Pick” is 9-3 and although not a huge name to MMA fans, he’s got the tools to bring it to Diaz. You might remember him from EliteXC: Renegade when he beat Daniel Pinedo via rear naked choke. Lim marks a change in plans for Diaz as well — Nick was originally to fight Muhsin Corbbrey on April 26th, but that fell through and Diaz was signed for the EliteXC/Strikeforce March event.

The show now includes Frank Shamrock vs. Cung Le, Jake Shields vs. Drew Fickett, Nick Diaz and Gilbert Melendez. This is a fightcard we’re liking.


At EliteXC, Flying Knee = Title Shot

(The man on the ground is now EliteXC’s lightweight champion. The man in the air is now under a bridge selling oranges, possibly.)

Gary Shaw must have a boner for flying knee knockouts.

When EliteXC signed K.J. Noons, he was a pro boxer who was riding three-straight knockout victories in MMA matches for Icon Sport. His first fight for Elite in February ’07 resulted in a knockout loss to Charles “Krazy Horse” Bennett, and he was relegated to a ShoXC card for his next match in July. Fortunately, he scored a dramatic flying-knee KO of Edson Berto in that fight, and despite having just seven pro MMA fights under his belt at that point he was given an immediate title shot in the 160-pound division against UFC vet Nick Diaz. Incredibly, that fight didn’t go so well for Diaz.

Now, it looks like Noons’s first title defense will be against Yves Edwards. And how did Edwards earn his shot? Coincidentally, with a hopping-knee knockout of Edson Berto, which must have tickled Gary Shaw something fearsome. To be honest, I kind of wish other fight organizations operated like EliteXC, where title shots don’t depend on a string of victories over top competition or marketability, but rather on who just pulled off the last ridiculous KO.

So yes, American Top Team confirmed today that Edwards will face Noons on April 26th in Hawaii for EliteXC’s 160-pound title. And not everybody’s happy about it. Nick Diaz called Noons out for ducking a rematch — according to Diaz, he just had surgery to fix his face, and that inconvenient blood-explosion thing won’t happen again — after which an insulted Noons responded with the following:

“First of all, I don’t dodge anybody. Whoever is the best, I want to fight them. As champion, you can decline who you want to fight. You only have one option as to who you’re going to fight, and that’s the best. Whoever the best is, that’s who I have to fight. In regard to a rematch with Nick, that would be a great pay day for me. Unfortunately, he’s not the best.”

Noons went on to express his desire for a rematch with Krazy Horse Bennett, which we’d love to see. And now, just for fun, here’s Yves Edwards’ acrobatic head-kick KO of Josh Thomson at UFC 49. I know we’ve discussed Steve Mazzagatti’s horrible reffing in the past, but this, I swear to you, is his worst performance of all time. Watch how he wanders into the frame like somebody’s lost grandfather after Edwards puts Thomson’s lights out, and slow-walks over to the fighters as Yves lands uninterrupted shots on Thomson’s face. It’s literally as if Mazzagatti forgot where he was and what he was supposed to be doing. Amazingly awful.


Kimbo and Nick Diaz’s Next; Tito/Lyoto Confirmed

Here’s some scoops for those nursing a post-President’s Day hangover.

— We’ve covered what we think would be dumb-ass fights for Kimbo Slice’s next war and what we think would be decent match-ups. Now the compass needle in the MMA universe seems to be pointing to Paul Buentello. The ex-UFC heavy – known as “The Headhunter” – has re-upped his challenge to Kimbo, as dictated to MMA Weekly.

“People want to see it. I think everybody wants to see it. Me and Kimbo should lace up the gloves. Everybody wants to see it and I think it’s time. He’s fighting all the guys I’ve already knocked out and I’ve already exposed. He needs to get off that buffet line I put out there and come over to my Paul Buentello taco shop and see if we can get to work.”

Buentello’s metaphors need some work, but it could be a fight worth parking your ass on the futon to see.

Pro Elite is reporting that Muhsin Corbbrey has signed to fight Nick Diaz in an EliteXC match on April 26th in Honolulu. No confirmation on Diaz’s signing the agreement. Corbbrey is 6-2 and trains with Din Thomas and John Blanken. If this happens, it will be Exploding Eye Nick’s first battle since his TKO loss to K.J. Noons last November. That fight was also notable for Nick giving the crowd the finger after he was declared the loser.

— Not that we’re calling Babalu a liar or anything, but Lyoto Machida’s manger, Ed Soares, has confirmed that the UFC light heavy fight between Lyoto and “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant Tito Ortiz will in fact happen on May 24th at UFC 84. The news comes via “The Lights Out Show” on TAGG – via MMA Junkie. Remember that Tito is saying that this is for sure his last fight with the ethically-challenged UFC.


Nick Diaz’s Exploding Eyeball Coming Back Soon

Nick Diaz

Yesterday, we brought you the live scoop of EliteXC’s conference call. The main topic was Kimbo’s upcoming February slaughter of Tank Abbott, but Gary Shaw also announced they would be following their March 29th event with a show on April 26th in Hawaii. The March event features Frank Shamrock against Cung Le, and the April throw-down will likely see the return of Nick Diaz – exploding eye sockets and all.

“He’s had surgery on his eye to repair all that scar tissue, and I think that Nick needed a rest,” said Shaw “He’s doing the right thing for Nick right now, and we’ve encouraged him to rest as well.

“But I think he’s fighting on the April 26 card.“

An opponent?


10 Fighters Who Should Hang Up Their Gloves

By CagePotato.com contributor Kipp Tribble

10. Dan Severn (80-15-7)

Yes, he’s a UFC Hall-of-Famer who still racks up wins in smaller organizations. He’s also 53 goddamned years old. That has to be retirement age for a mixed martial artist. At this point in his life, he should be sipping Metamucil coladas and yelling at kids to get off of his lawn, not rolling on the mat with guys half his age. But we’ll vote to let “The Beast” stick around for at least one more match to see if he can maintain bladder control when socked in the gut.

9. Elvis Sinosic (8-11-2)

His retarded nickname is bad enough; his consistent mediocrity is absolutely inexcusable. Let’s start with the fact that he just got knocked out at Cage Rage by Paul Cahoon — a fighter playing .500 ball himself — in a mere 21 seconds. Well played, King, well played. While he may still have some fights left in him, we’d rather not risk having to yawn through another of his sleepwalk matches. Go back to Australia and rock ‘n rumble with the ‘roos, Elvis. They’ll probably take longer than 21 seconds to knock your middling ass out.

8. Nick Diaz (15-7, 1 NC)

Nick gets a spot on the list not for his positive marijuana test or terminated UFC contracts, but for his volcanic eye sockets. By now, the guy isn’t able to make it through one round without his eyelids shredding, the result of a rare condition also known as “shitty defense that causes your fragile face to get punched in.” We felt his pain when the doctor stopped his fight against K.J. Noons at EliteXC: Renegade, but unless he’s allowed to step into the ring wearing safety goggles, Little Nicky’s gotta go.