Nick Diaz the triathlete just doesn't have the same ring to it as former MMA champion and current top-ranked world contender. Sigh. Photo of Diaz via CombatLifestyle.com.
Well, if you ask his younger brother, Nate Diaz -- and MMA Fighting.com's Ariel Helwani did just that earlier today after the UFC on Fox 3 press conference at Radio City Music Hall in New York, N.Y. -- he will tell you that he thinks it's the latter.
Indeed, the older Diaz apparently wasn't "caught up in the moment" or being pointlessly over dramatic when he declared his hasty retirement from the sport immediately following a controversial unanimous decision loss to Carlos Condit in the UFC 143 main event at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, just last month (Feb. 4, 2012).
Diaz, who chased Condit for nearly 25 minutes of their five-round fight for the interim Welterweight belt, as well as a significant amount of onlookers, felt the Stockton, Calif.,-scrapper deserved the nod. However, Condit's accurate counter-striking, backpedaling attack was enough to win the bout in the eyes of the ringside judges, as well as earn him a future date with St. Pierre, the true 170-pound division champion.
Then the situation got real funny.
Condit apparently requested a rematch because of all the post-fight outcry. Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) President Dana White then green-lit the second go-round; however, less than 24 hours later it was all scrapped because Diaz "surprisingly" tested positive for THC, which is the active ingredient in marijuana, a banned substance in regulated MMA competition.
Diaz, a proud, card-carrying legal marijuana smoker in California, was then suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC), pending a a disciplinary hearing to discuss the matter later this year. One that Diaz might now not bother to attend, considering that he's apparently got other things to keep him busy, and more than enough change in his pocket to keep doing them.
Lil' Diaz explains:
"Triathalon season is starting so he's getting ready, getting in shape for that and concentrating on being in shape, being healthy and helping me out and coaching me for this fight [against Jim Miller]. Right now, I don't think [we will see him back inside the Octagon]. He's big on, like I said, staying in shape and just being healthy right now. He's not worried about it. I think he's retired. He hasn't been into this whole fighting thing for some time ... since everything that goes on with the funny wins and losses. And not just for him, but for people on our team. So, I just think he's relaxed right now, you know? I think he's pretty set on his retirement, though. I kind of agree with him [about his decision]. It's hard to say -- he's my brother. I'm not going to tell him to go fight somebody. I think he's doing the right thing. He made enough money to just chill back, sit back and relax. People don't understand: Nick never had nothing. He came from not much, so when he complained a lot about not making a lot of money it's because there were so many people making more money than him and he works 10 times hard than them. So, they definitely paid him enough money to not have to anything. He doesn't need to fight."
Diaz has long argued that he was "overworked and underpaid."
In fact, he has consistently expressed his desire to become a professional boxer, even going as far as to tease a fight with Jeff Lacy, because he would earn more money. That ambition never materialized and perhaps never will because as Nate tells it, Nick is already living the dream and living comfortably without having to answer to anyone but himself.