Nick Diaz and his Cesar Gracie-led mixed martial arts (MMA) team had more than their fair share of outlandish suggestions and conspiracy theories before, during and after his 170-pound world title fight against Welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre at UFC 158, which took place at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, on March 16, 2013.
None of them, at least for now, have panned out. And it's safe to say that won't change anytime soon, unless the camp can ferret out its diabolical mole in the near future.
Meanwhile, on planet Earth, news has begun to trickle out about the health -- or lack thereof -- of St. Pierre, who was apparently under the weather on the morning of the blockbuster pay-per-view (PPV), fighting a fever (read more here) before having to perform for 25 exhausting minutes against perhaps the best-conditioned athlete in the sport.
St. Pierre managed to push through it and register a dominant decision win (watch the highlights here), however, it was pretty clear that "Rush" did not turn in his most spirited and/or impressive performance to date against a trash-talking, "disrespectful" opponent who he uncharacteristically vowed to beat into premature retirement.
It all made a little more sense when his head trainer, Firas Zahabi, revealed post-fight that he was battling a bug, but now Le Journal de Montreal has additional comments from the head of Tristar Gym, who revealed St. Pierre tweaked his Achilles tendon toward the end of training camp.
He explains (via Google Translation):
"Fortunately, there were no tears. That said, it was very tense and very painful, but not enough to cancel the fight. Our concern was that the tendon tears during combat. For the moment, we do not know if he aggravated his injury, but it certainly will undergo treatment in the coming weeks for the tendon can heal properly. "
With the combination of sickness and injury, St. Pierre, naturally, found it "incredibly difficult" to compete. The good news is that he did, and even on perhaps his worst day, St. Pierre was skilled enough to convincingly defeat the former Strikeforce 170-pound champion.
Perhaps more important, St. Pierre -- who was sidelined up until relatively recently for about one year because of major knee surgery -- did not exacerbate the Achilles injury to a point where it would require another extended leave or, worst case scenario, another trip to the operating room.
With two post-op wins now in the bag, St. Pierre certainly deserves some much-needed rest and relaxation to get his mind and body right again. And, according to Zahabi, the French-Canadian will likely convalesce for about six months, putting him on a collision course with No. 1 division contender, Johny Hendricks, sometime in fall 2013.