Written by Michael Finch
To my amazement, Carlos Condit was awarded a Unanimous Decision over Nick Diaz in the main event of UFC 143. Even more shocking to me was that two judges scored it 49-46, meaning that they gave one of Diaz’s dominant second or fifth rounds to Condit. I have been watching MMA for over 10 years now, and this is one of the worst championship decisions in history. Please, let me explain.
The first round was close, but Diaz was much more aggressive with his striking. His pressing boxing attack backed Condit up. Condit did a good job circling off of the fence, but spent most of the round backpedaling and uncomfortable with a confident Diaz on his case. Diaz won the round 10-9.
Round two was a dominant round for Diaz. The crafty boxer landed clean combinations on Condit, even literally slapping him in the face. Diaz landed a vicious combination against the fence, maybe eight punches, to Condits body. The round clearly went to Diaz. A couple of MMA websites, one very major, scored this round to Condit. I wonder what fight they were watching?
Round three showed Condit hanging tough with kicks. Diaz seemed to slow his attack, and though he was the aggressor, Condit was able to land a bit more. It was a tight round, but I can see it being scored 10-9 for Condit.
The fourth round is very similar to the third, with a stalking but slowed Diaz and a moving, kicking Condit. Both fighters had their moments in this round, and Condit seemed to be sticking well to his game-plan. As the round ended, Diaz held Condit’s leg, and should have been reprimanded more from the referee. Condit took the round 10-9.
Now, here is the fight defining round for me. I had two rounds in the books for Diaz, and two for Condit. The round was competitive early, continuing the kickboxing match. I thought Condit landed more strikes in the first three minutes. Then Diaz took the back of Condit, tripping him to the floor and sinking in a body triangle to stick. Diaz worked for a choke, thought about an arm-bar, and had some choke possibilities before he tried to jump for the arm with seconds to go. Condit was able to escape at the bell, and the two embraced afterwords. To me, this is a clear round for Diaz, 10-9, due to a very dominant position and attempts to finish the fight. The fight for Diaz on my scorecard is 48-47, and I was ready to hear 49-46 Diaz as well, with a debatable third round.
However, as we know, Condit got his hand raised via a Unanimous Decision. I am shocked and amazed that the fifth round was scored to Condit. Diaz clearly had the dominant positions, and there was no shocking event that took place in the striking that would indicate Condit overcoming the clear ground domination that Diaz dished out.
Diaz often does show a lack of respect for his opponents. Tonight there was lots of taunts and questionable activity from him, none of which is ideal for a champion. Diaz doesn’t enjoy media, he doesn’t thrive under the spotlight, and he isn’t very reliable when it comes to appearing at media events. There were many problems with Diaz being champion, but his performance in tonights fight against Condit was not one of them.