The UFC seemed to have overcome the injury bug that hit them last year, getting off solid events in the early going of the year and announcing a lot of high profile fights as they filled out their mid year calendar. This past weekend, to the press around UFC 157, UFC president Dana White has expressed concern over two of the title fights the company had announced for later this year, and injuries had nothing to do with his worries!
The most concerning is the latest chapter in the Nick Diaz saga. Diaz has apparently no showed several shoots for the UFC’s ‘PRIMETIME’ show, costing the UFC approximately $50k and once again failing in his contractual obligations. The UFC has scrapped his main event before for the same reasons, and White stated it is under consideration. This would scrap the UFC’s March 16th UFC 158 event headlined by Diaz’ challenge to welterweight champion George St Pierre. That show is less than a month away.
The UFC could graduate Johny Hendricks into the title shot and there may be other options, but St Pierre is known to be a meticulous trainer and he is unlikely to accept a big change on short notice. So this whole match is in danger.
Then came the news that White received from featherweight champion Jose Aldo‘s camp – Aldo does not want to fight Anthony Pettis because he feels he does not deserve it.
At what point did Aldo go from his usual line of ‘I’ll fight whoever Dana and the UFC ask me to fight, it is my job’ mumbo jumbo to saying something along the lines of ‘I’ll fight anyone, just not him’?
White is reported to have stuck to his guns, saying ‘He’s going to fight Pettis, or he’s not going to like how this is going to turn out.’
But what if Aldo continues with this line of thinking? Would White really strip him of the 145 lb title? How do you strip one of the top 5 pound for pound fighters in the world? Potentially, an interim title match could be set up and you let Aldo sit for a while. Chad Mendes vs Frankie Edgar for an interim title?
It is tough to try and limit your true stars, and White has talked about treating Anderson Silva like an ‘artist’. Is Aldo becoming one too?
The Nick Diaz situation is bordering on mental illness. Look up Rodney White and the Houston Rockets and their ordeal. Diaz is one stepped removed from that, and if this fight falls apart, he needs to haave his disorders ordered.