Most of the UFC’s fighters are respectful, even-tempered and professional. And I think that’s the way it should be. But every once in a while, it’s kind of refreshing to see a fighter who acts like, well, a fighter. Nick Diaz apparently grew up in a pretty tough neighborhood and learned to fight out of necessity, rather than as a way to compete or make money. He’ll be headlining Ultimate Fighting Championship 143 when he fights Carlos Condit.
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For some reason, the UFC has been slow to announce the entire card, so we’ll only look at a couple of bouts. Before we go further with Diaz vs Condit, let’s look at the the second most anticipated matchup, Josh Koscheck vs. Mike Pierce.
Josh Koscheck has this “villain” image to him, which to be honest, I don’t get. He may have come off as a bit of a jerk on the original Ultimate Fighter, but that was a long time ago, and it was a reality TV show. He definitely doesn’t seem to be Mr. Nice Guy, but I don’t see why he apparently continues to be disliked by many. Regardless, he’s a good fighter.
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Mike Pierce is not exactly a big name, but he’s only lost to top level fighters while in the UFC. Unfortunately for him, his wins aren’t exactly against top level guys. And Koscheck is a top level guy. So using that simplistic logic, Koscheck should win. Koscheck does once in a while surprisingly get knocked out in a fight he’d be expected to – and probably otherwise would – win, and that’s the only way I see Pierce winning. But that’s unlikely, so I’m going with the obvious choice, Koscheck. I haven’t been able to find any betting lines in this one.
Back to the main event, Nick Diaz vs Carlos Condit. Again, I like Diaz for his badassedness, but I also like him for his skills. It’s not hype when they talk about his cardio, he’s got a strange but effective punching style, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen someone with such impressive ground defense. He’s also the former StrikeForce champ. And he fought a bunch in the UFC years ago. The betting lines have him at around -150.
The problem is, he didn’t face very tough competition in StrikeForce. And his prior UFC record wasn’t that great. Nice win against BJ in his return, but BJ has rarely been impressive past the first round in welter weight fights. And I’m a BJ fan. At least I used to be. Diaz is a good fighter, but I think the hype might be a little excessive.
Carlos Condit’s streak might be shorter, but his wins are bigger. He had the WEC belt, which is more impressive than the Strikeforce one. I see Condit winning this one. And since the betting lines have him as the underdog at around +120, that’s a pretty easy bet.
As always, let’s hope for a great night of fights.
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