UFC 143 reaction: Carlos Condit executed a perfect gameplan to narrowly defeat Nick Diaz

This excerpt is from my preview of the fight:

Condit is the slightly larger fighter here and has about a two inch reach advantage which he should try to use to his advantage. It’ll be important for Condit to set the pace in this fight as Diaz likes to come forward with punches and force his opponents to fight going backwards. He’ll need to use good footwork to create angles and take advantage of the fact that Diaz likes to block strikes with his face due to porous defense. It’s a five round fight, so it’ll be important for Condit to win rounds early as Diaz usually gets stronger as the fight goes on. He can do that by making use of his leg kicks as Diaz has shown that he is vulnerable to them in the past. He may also look to slip the punches of Diaz and shoot for a takedown to score points and inflict damage from the top position. He can’t allow Diaz to come forward relentlessly with attacks while moving backwards as that’s a recipe for disaster. He will also need to avoid allowing Diaz to coax him into fighting on emotion as Diaz will often taunt his opponents with gestures and talk to them during his fights.

Condit executed those points almost flawlessly and took home a controversial decision win on Saturday night. I scored the fight for Diaz 48-47, winning rounds 1, 2, and 5, but it was an extremely close fight and I can’t argue with Condit getting the nod. It wasn’t a robbery by any means as it was an extremely tough fihgt. The most impressive thing is that Condit didn’t allow the trash talking and taunting that Diaz does to distract him from sticking to his gameplan. Think about it, if a guy slaps you with an open hand and calls you a “bit**’ afterwards, it would be really easy to fight on emotion and just get into an all out brawl.

I don’t understand the backlash that Condit has received from fans talking about he ran all night? The object of fighting is to hit without being hit, not stand toe to toe with a guy that has cardio for days and is almost impossible to knockout at this stage of his career in Diaz. The gameplan he used is the gameplan you have to execute to defeat Diaz if you are not a fighter with a good wrestling base, which Condit does not fit that profile.

This fight brought up the old argument in how fights should be judged/scored. How much is a leg kick worth? Should strikes to the head and body count more than a leg kick? Leg kicks were the main difference in the fight when you look at it from a statistical standpoint. Condit out landed Diaz overall by about 50 strikes with the difference being about 50 more leg kicks landed. Diaz scored more to the head and body, so one has to ask if the leg kicks did any damage or if they were just to score points? I have no doubt that some of them landed with authority, but many of them seem to have little to no impact on the fight. There was visual evidence of Diaz limping or causing Diaz to slow his stalking pace down at all late in the fight.

It was a close fight and one that has people wanting to see an immediate rematch. I would be open to it, but I think a rematch would be very similar to the first matchup. Do you think Diaz should get an immediate rematch, or should Condit be able to move past this fight without doing so?

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