Nick Diaz (16-7) will fight Hayato "Mach" Sakurai (32-8-2) for the first-ever DREAM welterweight title at the Osakajo Hall in Osaka, Japan, on July 21, accordingly to MMAWeekly.com.
Diaz earned the right to challenge for the vacant strap with a first round technical knockout of Katsuya Inoue at DREAM 3 this past weekend. It was a fight that almost scrapped but was given the green light at the last minute by ProElite officials, which turned out to be a wise decision in hindsight.
He is healthy enough to challenge Muhsin Corbbrey at the Elite XC show slated for the Blaisdell Center in Honolulu, Hawaii, on June 14 (a cause for alarm prior to the fight) and he is a possible star in the making overseas -- Diaz was involved in a sensational bout with Takanori Gomi ... something more than likely still fresh in the minds of Japanese MMA fans.
Sakurai, on the other hand, is coming of a surprise submission loss to David Baron at Shooto: "Tradition 1" earlier this month. "Mach" -- who was recently courted by the UFC to no avail -- has already competed under the DREAM banner, defeating Hidetaka Monma via technical knockout in the inaugural event back in March.
This should be an extremely exciting fight, which will punctuate the finals of the 2008 Dream Lightweight Grand Prix ... what a night for mixed martial arts it is shaping up to be.