SAN JOSE, Calif. – Earlier this week Nate Diaz said he planned to move from lightweight to welterweight regardless of what happened at Saturday’s UFC on FOX 7 event. Don’t count UFC President Dana White among the proponents of that plan.
Diaz (16-9 MMA, 11-7 UFC), a recent lightweight title challenger, suffered his first career knockout loss at Saturday’s UFC on FOX 7 event at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif. Fellow 155-pounder Josh Thomson (20-5 MMA, 3-1 UFC) made a triumphant return to the octagon and scored a second-round stoppage with a head kick and punches in their main-card bout.
Prior to the bout, Diaz told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com) he felt there were few fresh challenges at lightweight and was planning a return to welterweight, where he went 2-2 from 2010-2011.
“I don’t think there’s anything for me at the lightweight division,” said Diaz, who’s logged 14 UFC fights at lightweight. “I already beat everyone at lightweight or I fought everyone already. … I’m going to sit around and fight the guys all over again? Boring. There’s no motivation in that. I’d rather fight someone new.”
White, though, doesn’t support the plan.
“I think going to 170 is a big mistake,” he said. “There are big, strong guys at 170. You can make 155. Look what happened tonight at 155.”
The usually durable and resilient Diaz simply got outclassed. Thomson continually switched up his stances, used early low kicks to set up high kicks later in the fight, scored takedowns and diced Diaz with sharp elbows. By the time Thomson, a former Strikeforce champion, unloaded a final volley of punches, Diaz’s corner actually threw in the towel. Referee Mike Beltran halted the fight a second later.
Diaz has now lost back-to-back fights for the first time since 2011, when he dropped decisions to welterweights Rory MacDonald and Dong Hyun Kim. It ultimately prompted his return to the lightweight division.
However, as Diaz relayed earlier in the week, White suggested Diaz’s desired move to 170 pounds isn’t a matter of tough weight cuts. At Friday’s weigh-ins, a disrobed Diaz stood on the scale for an extended period of time as officials tried to determine if he had, in fact, made weight.
White, though, said it wasn’t a matter of Diaz being heavy, but rather, a faulty scale.
“What happened was the scale was literally going like this – click, click, click, click, click, click, click, click,” he said. “It was literally switching back and forth to he was on weight, to he was off-weight, to he was on weight, to he was off weight.
“It did the entire – we were up there for what, like 40 seconds, 45 seconds – and it literally did it the entire time. So I was like, ‘Come on. He got the weight. This f—ing thing is going crazy.’ And it did that twice. It did it two different times with two different fighters. These digital scales are goofy.”
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