Diego Sanchez smoked weed, got drunk and lost $170,000 after loss to BJ Penn

Photo by Dave Mandel via Sherdog.com

Talk about kicking a man when he's down.

Former number one lightweight contender Diego Sanchez lived the "rockstar life" in the wake of his devastating, blood-letting loss to then-division champion B.J. Penn at UFC 107 in Dec. 2009.

"Dream" revealed in a recent interview with MMAWeekly.com that after the five round beatdown, which was mercifully stopped in the fifth and final round because of a grisly gash to his forehead, he "lost control" and began to party heavily.

But his problems weren't limited to just excessive drinking and drugs. He apparently trusted a close "friend" to manage his finances, which cost him a cool $170,000.

Hear how it all happened:

"I lost control of life. I had just made my biggest payday and I was just down about the loss. That was my dream to become world champion, and it still is. But it was at my fingertips and the way I lost, getting cut, so brutally cut, I was beat up.... I let a person that I thought was a friend, a real close friend, someone that would help me with finances, I had him helping me out with stuff. Turned out I got embezzled for over $170,000. He conned me.... I was sucked into a life of sin. I was smoking weed, I was drinking, partying, and it just really, truly held me back from my potential."

Sanchez ultimately sobered (and wised) up, returning to Albuquerque, N.M., into the open arms of old mentor Greg Jackson. However, he didn't immediately return to form, dropping a unanimous decision to John Hathaway in a welterweight tilt five months later.

It would actually take him 10 months to get back in the win column when he outpointed Paul Thiago at UFC 121 in fall 2010. And the transformation of The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) winner would be complete, new nickname and all, when he successfully battled Martin Kampmann in a sensational, back-and-forth brawl earlier this year.

Sanchez now claims that he is "all grown up" and the he is an "adult."

We'll soon see if he's man enough to make it three consecutive wins when he takes on UFC Hall of Famer, former 170-pound stalwart and mixed martial arts (MMA) legend, Matt Hughes, at UFC 135 next month.

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