Nick Diaz | Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com


Nick Diaz offered little in the way of trash talk in the lead-up to his Strikeforce welterweight title defense against Evangelista “Cyborg” Santos. After submitting the Brazilian with a second-round armbar on Saturday at the HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif., the generally brazen 27-year-old refused to attribute that fact to some newfound sophistication and reiterated his respect for Santos.

“Everybody thinks I’ve matured and grown up, but it’s just how it is,” a serene Diaz said at the post-fight press conference for Strikeforce “Diaz vs. Cyborg.”

“I have respect for fighters that come out and fight,” the champion said of Santos. “He wasn’t trying to score and run. He was coming straight forward and trying to fight. I give a guy like that a lot of respect. It has nothing to do with me growing older.”

Prior to the fight-ending submission, Diaz and Santos engaged in a hard-hitting dogfight, which saw Cyborg rack up chopping leg kicks while Diaz scored with his trademark volume boxing style. When Diaz’s strikes began to take their toll, Santos took the fight to the floor -- something Diaz expected from the jump and was prepared to capitalize on.

“I did see him taking me down from taking too many punches. I did figure I’d be able to ladder up and finish an armlock or a triangle choke on a guy like that,” said Diaz. “I think I put on a decent performance. Cyborg is a really worthy opponent. It’s not like this guy is some joke.”

But while Diaz heaped praise upon his just-dispatched challenger, he had few positive words for those potentially in line for a shot at his title.

Next up for Diaz looks to be British slugger Paul Daley, who is first booked for a Feb. 26 bout with Deep champion Yuya Shirai in Manchester, England. In his most recent Strikeforce outing, Daley notched a scorching knockout of Scott Smith, whom Diaz submitted last June.

“I’m not really impressed with Paul Daley as a mixed martial artist,” said Diaz. “He’s got great stand-up, sure, [but] I wouldn’t judge him from the Scott Smith fight.”

Diaz went on to criticize Smith, a fellow Californian, for what he sees as a lack of desire to improve as a fighter.

“I know who Scott Smith is. I’m from Stockton, Lodi. He’s from Elk Grove. He’s never come down to train with us. He’s never tried to get better,” Diaz said. “He does his tae bo, or whatever, you know what I mean? Then Paul Daley knocks him out and everybody is like, ‘Look at Paul Daley!’”

And how would Diaz approach a fight with Daley?

“I just might do some karate ... some wushu,” Diaz deadpanned before offering a dispassionate breakdown of the matchup. “I see me putting punches on him, maybe him trying to take me down, getting caught in a choke. He can run from me. I’d run him down and take him down and beat him on the ground. I dunno.”

Diaz, who signed a multi-year contract extension with Strikeforce in December, seemed similarly disinterested in a match against unbeaten up-and-comer Tyron Woodley, who has won six straight inside the Strikeforce cage.

“I don’t wanna talk bad about anybody. I don’t really have anything about him that impresses me,” he said of the two-time NCAA Div. I All-American. “I didn’t think he was a wrestler, but then I heard he was a wrestler. It was like, ‘OK.’”

So, the question seems to be: what opponent would Diaz want to fight?

“I’m interested in fighting people ranked above me and upping my status, but, whatever,” he said. “I fight for [Strikeforce CEO] Scott Coker here, and they’ll have to work that out here.”

Jordan Breen contributed to this report.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.
From Around the Web

Related News

Anderson Silva has unfinished business with Nick Diaz, asks for UFC rematch in Brazil

  • 10 days ago
  • 4 views

Maybe he wants to prove he can beat him clean? Anderson Silva appears to be looking for attention, as the former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight titleholder has taken to his Instagr read news >>

Anderson Silva has ‘unfinished business’ with Nick Diaz, requests rematch in Brazil

  • 10 days ago
  • 4 views

After failing several drug tests at UFC 183, Anderson Silva took to social media to request a rematch against Nick Diaz. Yet to face adequate punishment for failing multiple drug tests during UFC 183 read news >>

Despite suspensions, ex-UFC champ Anderson Silva stumps for Nick Diaz rematch

  • 10 days ago
  • 0 views

Despite some more pressing business – namely their failed drug tests and pending suspensions – former UFC champion Anderson Silva is stumping for a rematch with Nick Diaz.Filed under: News, UFC read news >>

Michael Bisping says he was never offered fight with Jacare, calls out Souza's manager

  • 10 days ago
  • 3 views

Michael Bisping is not happy with Ronaldo 'Jacare' Souza's manager, stating on social media that he was never even offered a fight with the former Strikeforce champ. Michael Bisping is not a fan of R read news >>

Michael Bisping ‘was never offered’ fight with ‘Jacare’ Souza

  • 10 days ago
  • 10 views

Ronaldo Souza’s manager was hoping that Michael Bisping could replace injured Yoel Romero at Saturday night’s UFC on FOX 15 in Newark, but the UFC ended up matching "Jacare" against Chris Camozzi. Af read news >>

Anderson Silva and Nick Diaz Delay UFC 183 Drug Test Hearings Again

  • 15 days ago
  • 7 views

Anderson Silva and Nick Diaz have once again requested and been granted continuances for their UFC 183-related drug test hearings. read news >>

Fight Tracks: Classics – Heart, Dire Straits, Nugent – at UFC Fight Night 63, plus Eminem

  • 20 days ago
  • 1 views

UFC Fight Night 63 offered up plenty of classics for walkout songs, like Heart, Dire Straits, Ted Nugent and ELO. And then there were the modern classics, like Eminem, Lil’ Scrappy and Benny Bennassi read news >>

Florian mocks Aldo, Cormier not impressed with McGregor's antics: 'I'd have punched him'

  • 21 days ago
  • 795 views

UFC hosts Kenny Florian and Daniel Cormier provide their contrasting reactions to McGregor's audacious behavior exhibited at the Dublin press conference. Daniel Cormier and Kenny Florian recently hos read news >>

Alistair Overeem amazed by Roy Nelson's durability at UFC 185

  • 26 days ago
  • 20 views

The former Strikeforce and K-1 champ spoke to Fox News about his UFC 185 win over "Big Country" in Dallas. Alistair Overeeem spoke with Fox Sports after his UFC 185 win over Roy Nelson and had some c read news >>