Nick Diaz was slated to face Georges St. Pierre for the UFC welterweight title on October 29 in Las Vegas. Today, Diaz, the former Strikeforce welterweight champion was a no-show at the UFC 137 press conference. Dana White couldn’t get a hold of him. Diaz’s manager, Cesar Gracie, couldn’t get a hold of him. Diaz’s friends couldn’t find him. He last spoke with Dana White on Monday after he missed the first of three private flights.
While this as crazy as it sounds when you’ve followed the paranoid, “strange” Diaz for the last few years, it’s unheard of in the UFC. People get injured. People fail drug tests. People go off the reservation (Rampage). But this? Unprecedented.
Enter Carlos Condit (27-5, 4-1 UFC). The Natural Born Killer, who has won 4 straight fights in the UFC and is coming off two straight Knockout of the Night awards was originally slated to fight B.J. Penn on the same card. When the UFC called and offered him the fight, he broke down before accepting. As I write this, Condit was on his way to Vegas to meet with the UFC and presumably start doing press for the bout.
Back to Diaz. Ariel Helwani spoke with manager Cesar Gracie after today’s presser. From MMA Fighting:
Gracie said he last spoke to Diaz Tuesday. That’s when Diaz informed him that he couldn’t find his passport and was not going to be able to fly to Toronto for that day’s media obligations. The UFC excused Diaz for missing the Toronto leg of the trip, as long as he made it to Las Vegas.
“I would have driven him to Vegas if it came to that,” Gracie said. “I don’t care. He just turned his phone off and acted like a little kid. It just doesn’t cut it.”
Gracie goes on to say that Diaz most likely suffers from some deep-seeded social anxiety. That sounds about right, but at this point, who is going to get Nick Diaz to switch from weed (his current anxiety medication of choice) to something that actually allows him to leave the house and try and make some noise inside the UFC?