Rundown of UFC 143 post-fight news and notes…
— 10,040 attendees filled the Mandalay Bay Events Center for a $2.3 million live gate.
— Stephen Thompson picked up a $65,000 KO of the Night bonus in his UFC debut for that sneaky head kick he used to put Dan Stittgen’s lights out. Dustin Poirier was awarded the Submission of the Night bonus for his sweet mounted triangle/armbar. And Fabricio Werdum and Roy Nelson earned Fight of the Night for their bloody battle.
— It’s been quite awhile since I remember fans so passionately split about a decision like they are with Nick Diaz vs. Carlos Condit. Honestly, when the fight was over I felt like Condit had won it and I really wanted Nick Diaz to win. I wasn’t actively scoring it as the fight progressed though, so perhaps I’ll change my mind when I go back and watch it again.
For what it’s worth, Dana White thought Carlos Condit won the fight as well and I’m sure he was internally hoping Diaz would win given the magnitude of GSP vs. Diaz.
“Carlos Condit won,” White said following the evening’s post-event press conference. “He went in there, and he fought a great fight. He stuck to his gameplan and didn’t fall in Nick Diaz’s (style of fight).”
“Nick Diaz is the master of getting you to fight his type of fight,” White said. “Fighters have egos, and millions of people are watching. When you start getting open-hand slapped by the other guy and he’s calling you names – ‘Alright, you want to do this?’ – they step in, and they do it. Carlos Condit kept his cool tonight, fought a perfect fight. He started early, chopping those legs, and that did make a big difference toward the end of the fight. It slowed Nick down a lot – body shots, too.”
Even though Dana felt Condit won the fight, he thought it was close enough to warrant a rematch if both fighters wanted it.
“It’s crazy, but … I was thinking about it after the fight,” White said. “People are bitching, and people think that was close, we could do that fight again before GSP comes back.”
“It depends on Carlos, too. Carlos has got to say – and Nick’s got to say, ‘I want to fight him again,’ too.”
That would certainly be one way of handling it. Condit said he was leaning towards waiting for GSP in his post-fight interview with Ariel Helwani, however Dana was pretty adamant that he wanted Condit to fight again if GSP is going to be out for too long. Nevertheless, I seriously doubt Condit would want to fight Diaz again, so we’ll have to see what happens. Dana also thought Josh Koscheck vs. Nick Diaz would be a good match-up.
— Of course, that’s all assuming Nick Diaz doesn’t actually retire. But I doubt he will and so does Dana White.
“You never know with Nick Diaz,” White said. “You never know. I think he’s just upset right now, and I think he’s emotional, but who knows?”
“I think once he goes home and realizes and calms downs – look, Nick Diaz is a fighter,” he said. “I don’t see Nick Diaz retiring, but who knows? This isn’t one of those sports where you want to be half in, half out.
“If that’s how you feel, maybe you should retire.”
Nick Diaz didn’t comment on it past his post-fight interview, but I’m sure Cesar Gracie will address it this week.
— Carlos Condit’s comments on the fight and moving forward as the interim welterweight champion:
“He was talking. I was landing punches,” Condit told UFC.com after his title-winning performance. “I think I was winning. No matter how much he talked, I was hitting hard and I was hitting him solid. That’s what I came here to do. I didn’t come here to talk.”
“[This win] is huge. This is just another step toward my ultimate goal of being among the best mixed martial artists in the world,” said Condit. “I’ve got a lot of work to do and a lot more improvements to make. Georges is a true champion, and he’s the best in the world.”
“I have the best fans in the world. I get so much support and respect from people all over the world who I don’t even know,” said Condit. “I want you guys to know how much it f—ing means to me. This isn’t always fun, and it’s not always easy, but hearing from fans and getting support from you guys gives me motivation.”
— Roy Nelson didn’t win last night, but he showed once again just how darn tough he is. Even one of his biggest critics, Dana White, was impressed with how Big Country kept fighting after taking so much punishment. He’s not sure what’s next for Nelson, but he hopes Nelson will continue to take his training and diet more seriously.
“I don’t know,” UFC president Dana White told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “We’ll see what happens. I mean the guy brings it. He comes to fight. I just – you wonder what he could do if he really, really trained and got into it.”
“I’ve been telling Roy forever if Roy took himself serious – for instance, Roy had moments there,” White said. “He rocked Werdum once with a couple of shots. If he was in good enough shape to keep that kind of a pace, he would win more fights.”
“I don’t know,” White said. “He’s tough though. He’s so tough. He’s one of the toughest guys I’ve ever seen.”
Here’s a pic of that nasty cut Fabricio Werdum opened up over his eye if you don’t mind seeing a little forehead flesh.
— Here’s some interesting news. Josh Koscheck revealed after the fight that he has split from AKA.
“I’ll be training out of Fresno for now,” Koscheck told MMAjunkie.com (www.mmajunkie.com). “I’m no longer affiliated with some of the people at the gym that I’ve been training at.”
“It was a tough camp,” Koscheck said. “This is my last camp there. I’m going to do my own thing.”
So does that mean he and Jon Fitch will finally fight? Koscheck says “good luck with that.”
“That’s what I whispered to him,” White told MMAjunkie.com. “I said, ‘Now I’m doing the Jon Fitch fight.’ That’s what I said to him. He said, ‘Good luck with that.'”
Dana said he “wouldn’t do it just to do it,” but if the fight made sense he would push for it. I’m not sure how many people are really clamoring for that one though.
— And last but not least, Dana White confirmed that Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen have verbally agreed to meet in June in Brazil and bout agreements should be finalized soon. It’s still unclear exactly where in Brazil the fight will happen. They wanted to do it at a soccer stadium in San Paulo, but apparently noise ordinances are making that difficult to book.