Nick Diaz Returns to Competitive MMA Fighting

Fringe MMA Nick Diaz Career Breakdown

When it comes to the sport of Mixed Martial Arts, there is no MMA fighter with a more wild career than Nick Diaz. With a record that spans multiple promotions, a championship belt in Strikeforce MMA and a crack at UFC gold against none other than George St. Pierre, it’s hard to find a more interesting fighter in the lexicon of MMA. Fighting is simply second nature to the king of Stockton’s famous streets.

It’s been six long, long years since we saw him clown Anderson Silva by laying down in the middle of the octagon. Who the hell does that when locked in a cage with one of MMA’s most respected and feared fighters?

When you watch Nick Diaz fight it’s almost like you are sitting in his backyard while he pimp slaps the s**t out of a neighborhood rival. The guy is tough as nails in every sense of the term and entertaining as hell to watch.

So now here we are in 2021 and at long last, the elder Diaz is making his return to the cage. So let’s take a look at the storied career of the man who invented the “Stockton Slap”.

Early Years – Nick Diaz Gives MMA Meaning

In his first four fights Diaz would run the gamut of ways to win.

  • Mike Wick – Submission
  • Chris Lytle – Decision
  • Blaine Tyler – Technical Knockout
  • Adam Lynn – Submission

This is what I’m talking about when I say the guy gave MMA meaning. Anywhere you took the fight it didn’t matter, you were screwed. Don’t like getting slapped around like a piñata? Fine, then I’ll take your arm home with me. Wanna clinch? I’m your huckleberry.

His second fight out was for an MMA championship in the IFC where he showed just how durable he is against a game Chris Lytle. Could this be the best MMA fighter around? Not so fast… Jeremy Jackson would prove that Diaz wasn’t invincible, albeit in the third and final fight in the one night welterweight tournament at UA 4 – King of the Mountain.

MMA Champion Again – WEC 6: Return of a Legend

Diaz would get back in the win column before dropping a split decision to Kuniyoshi Hironaka. Shortly thereafter he would dominate Joe Hurley and tap him with a kimura and become an MMA Champion for the second time in his short career at WEC 6.

It turns out the founder and matchmaker of the WEC, Scott Adams, always had an eye for exceptional talent.

Diaz would ultimately vacate his title in World Extreme Cagefighting to defend his belt in the IFC against the only man who ever beat him in Jeremy Jackson. He would win the fight by technical knockout and unknowingly stamp his ticket to the ever growing, future behemoth, the Ultimate Fighting Championship to fight Jackson in a rubber match.

Showing his diversity yet again, he would submit Jackson via armbar in the third round of their fight at UFC 44.

MMA Boxing Showcase – Nick Diaz vs Robbie Lawler

Who would have thought we would see Nick Diaz vs Robbie Lawler 2 almost two decades after their first fight? This fight was an instant classic with both Diaz and Lawler showcasing excellent MMA boxing. This was really the beginning of the Diaz we know today – hands down and mouth running.

It looked like Lawler was about to put him away on several occasions, right up until Diaz caught him with a perfectly timed short right counter. It literally looked like Robbie was a robot that just had the kill switch engaged. Lights out on the feet, it was electric to say the least.

Now here we are, 17 years later and I’m sure I speak for a lot of MMA fans out there when I say that of all the upcoming MMA fights- this one moves the needle for sure.

Diaz would go on to win some, lose some and avenge some losses in the next few years.

Pride MMA – Gogoplata Puts Out The Fireball

When Diaz decided to venture outside the MMA cage and cross the Pacific to take on a surging Takanori Gomi, he showed up right. Gomi was 12-1 in his last 13 fights at the time and Diaz was coming off a TKO of the dangerous Gleison Tibau. The clash took place in Pride MMA and saw Diaz slip on an absolutely epic gogoplata to tap the Fireball Kid.

The win would ultimately be overturned when he tested positive for marijuana metabolites, which is ridiculous in my opinion.

Strikeforce MMA Champion

Diaz would sign with Elite XC where he would go 3-1 before the promotion was gobbled up by Strikeforce. There he would batter Frank Shamrock in what turned out to be Frank’s final fight.

He would go on to be undefeated in the promotion and eventually become the Strikeforce MMA champion at welterweight with a win over Marius Zaromskis. After delivering solid shots throughout, Diaz would ultimately tire him out and finish the fight with his now famous short right. Nick would defend his Strikeforce title successfully four times and vacate the belt when the UFC came knocking with an offer to fight UFC Welterweight king George “Rush” St. Pierre.

Back to the UFC – BJ Penn, Condit, GSP and Nick Diaz vs Anderson Silva

Though Diaz was signed to fight for the title, he abandoned the press tour and a furious UFC President Dana White would yank him from the fight. What an absolute bummer that was for the fans, but he’s Nick Diaz, what do you want?

He would ultimately be re-booked to fight an aging BJ Penn, taking a unanimous decision win that led him to a shot at UFC gold, which would have been his fourth title in a major promotion.

His fight with Carlos Condit was an absolute war which saw Condit outland him in significant strikes and led to his unanimous decision loss. Diaz was pressuring the entire fight, it was a competitive affair to say the least. Not everyone agreed with that decision but you know what they say, never leave it up to the judges.

By an odd twist of events, Diaz would still get his shot at the Champ after being suspended for a year for yet again testing positive for marijuana.

The UFC welterweight title fight against GSP proved to be a one sided affair with the champ using his superior wrestling to stifle any chance Diaz had in the fight. Between wrestling and St. Pierre’s snapping jab, the champ would take a unanimous decision and Diaz would call it quits in the wake of the fight – for a little while anyway.

Nick would eventually come out of retirement for the highly anticipated Nick Diaz vs Anderson Silva fight that would prove to be one of the weirdest fights in MMA history. A frustrated Diaz quite literally laid down as if to take a nap in the middle of the fight to taunt a patient Anderson Silva. Anderson would take the unanimous decision win but both fighters tested positive for banned substances and the result was ultimately determined a no contest.

What an absolutely wild ride this guy has had in Mixed Martial Arts… and lucky for us, the ride keeps on going. I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to see Nick Diaz vs Robbie Lawler 2, the match 17 years in the making.

Stay tuned for more editorials and fight coverage.

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  1. It will be interesting to see how Diaz performs after a long lay off against a very active and much improved Robbie Lawler.

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