Nick Diaz is a usually a man of few words when you stick a microphone in front of his face. The elder Diaz brother has clearly never liked the media attention that has come with the job of cage fighting, and his interviews range from unresponsive to downright surly.
That’s the reason it’s so refreshing to catch this interview with chiropractor / naprapathic physician and YouTuber, Dr. Beau Hightower, where Nick just chats pony happily for 20 minutes.
Things don’t start out that relaxed as Diaz is clearly uncomfortable as Dr. Beau runs through his, “What’s up YouTube!” introduction. And then the “interview” starts with Nick sharing his personal health status, which feels a bit strange to include. But, considering the OG Stockton slapper was suffering from two ruptured discs in his neck the last time we saw him in the cage, we figure that’s the most relevant fight news to come out of the video.
“I have a little bit of — a few neck issues,” Diaz said. “My L5 and my S1. Lower back stuff. I’m just not as agile as I was. Just lack of training, I think. I took some time off, and coming back in, I think ‘Well I better—’ ... I used to just jump back into sparring, five 5-minute rounds. Teach class and train all day. I still do that, but I gotta map it out and put miles on the road. I need to do some strengthening work. Leg strength and lower back stuff, just to pull all that stuff together.”
But, once the massage work starts, Nick starts to loosen up both physically and with his words. Asked about Nick’s famous, “Train by day, Joe Rogan Experience podcast by night, all day,” quote, Diaz admitted he’d cut back on his JRE consumption.
“I try not to watch too much of that now — I get too ramped up in that stuff,” he said (via MMA Junkie). “I like all of it. I used to like all of it. The thing about watching that and the reason why I was so in tune with it was because I was actually following a lot of people he would bring onto that show before he had them on that show. I was already versed in a lot of the subjects.
“I don’t want to go far into it, but a lot of those guys in all aspects, with health and fitness or some of the other cool stuff, I was kind of versed in watching and following some of them before he had them on there,” he continued. “I was a real big YouTube guy before there was Instagram and Snapchat. Social media really kind of blew me out of the water. Because I was kind of an old-school YouTuber. I used to record all my stuff and put it on YouTube. I still have a channel but something happened to my account, I got locked out of my account.”
After admitting with a rueful laugh that he didn’t get royalties from his voice kicking off every episode of the $100 million Joe Rogan Experience podcast, Diaz shared his Top 5 favorite movies. And while there were a lot of classic fight films in there, his top pick was a bit surprising.
“True Romance,” he said, picking the 1993 crime romance written by Quentin Tarantino. “I like Lionheart with Jean Claude Van-Damme. That one and Bloodsport and Kickboxer got me into fighting. I like Die Hard. I don’t see why it’s not [a Christmas movie]. It’s during Christmas, right? I like Terminator, 1 and 2.”
Diaz often seemed to talk in riddles during press conferences, but it seems like the words that would come out of his mouth a bit confused had more logic to them when you delve deeper outside the spotlight. He famously called out UFC for selling “Wolf Tickets” back in 2013 while preparing for his fight against Georges St-Pierre. And while people didn’t quite understand where the expression came from, it became a favorite amongst MMA fans for the decade to follow.
“You’re selling bulls—,” he said when asked to explain the term. “Have you ever heard of The Boy Who Cried Wolf? I’m trying to remember the story of The Boy Who Cried Wolf. He was crying about this wolf and then there really was a wolf and then nobody believed him, and then the wolf came out and ate him. You’re talking s—. If you’re talking s—, the wolf is going to get you.”
The whole 20-minute segment on Dr. Beau Hightower’s YouTube channel is a fascinating glimpse into the mind of Nick Diaz when he’s too distracted by physio to get all wrapped up in how much he dislikes talking on the record. Unfortunately, it doesn’t include any details on his fighting future.
Nick has said in the past he plans on returning in 2023, but we’re not to sure about his Israel Adesanya goal. There is a name that could work, though — another elder statesman of MMA who would interest Diaz. When asked who he’d fight if he could fight anyone in the history of the world, Diaz picked Joe Riggs.
“One person in history? Dead or alive?” he asked. “I never liked picking fights. I really didn’t like Joe Riggs. I fought him. I beat him up, too, but I lost the fight. Then, we fought in the hospital afterward.”
The interview wrapped up with some valuable life lessons from Diaz.
“Remember to brush your teeth — the back ones get cavities, or something like that,” he said. “Remember to do your pushups. Do 100 pushups. Do a set of 50, count it. Then 20. And then two sets of 10. Five more and you’re done. Two things will get you in shape: running and sparring. Stay away from women.”