Diego Sanchez took a loss against Gilbert Melendez last weekend, in what turned out to be the ‘Fight of the Night’ at UFC 166. Sanchez, who has been with the UFC for almost a decade now, proved he is still capable of putting on some of the best performances in the division, and even in losing he deserves credit. Sanchez, who won the first season of ‘The Ultimate Fighter’, is still just 31 years old. He has had an up and down career, bouncing from Lightweight to Welterweight and back, and he at times has gotten lost in the shuffle. He remains talented and dangerous, and fun to watch, so we are sure to see him again soon.
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Sanchez needs motivation, and he needs a big fight that if he wins, it will continue to raise his stock. Here is an intriguing idea, that the UFC wouldn’t even consider, but they should.
Respond to Bellator’s offer of sending Ben Askren to the UFC for an immediate title shot against George St Pierre by telling them Askren has to come in and beat Sanchez first. Bellator will likely back away. If Bellator chooses to send Askren, the UFC adds another top 10 guy to their roster.
Askren is top 10, but he has a reputation for being a boring blanket grappler. Try to overcome that by putting Askren in with Sanchez, who is almost always an exciting fight. I think Sanchez would thrive off of being the UFC’s answer to Askren. Sanchez is a great fighter, but he is also ‘unique’, ‘quirky’, ‘marches to the beat of his own drum’. He is weird. But when in his weirdness he hits on a motivation, he uses it well in his fights. By the time he is in the cage, he will want to kill Askren.
Askren will probably win, but if he stifles Sanchez, then the UFC can go ahead and just cut Jake Shields, because they now have Askren to bore us all with.