Toronto, Ontario, CAN — Following his first round victory over Paul Daley earlier this month in San Diego, Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz restated his desire to cross over into the world of professional boxing once again.
Citing a lack of compelling fights, Diaz and his camp have gone as far as identifying former super middleweight champion Jeff “Left Hook” Lacy as a possible opponent for the Stockton, California native’s first trip into the ring since 2005.
Megan Olivi brought up the topic of Diaz’s foray into professional boxing with Dana White following Wednesday’s press conference for UFC 129, and the UFC President shared his thoughts on the subject.
“I’ll say the same thing I always say about Nick. He’s a tough one to deal with. He doesn’t play the game well. I think the kid has potential. Forget about fighting – he has the potential to be a star. But for some reason he’s an anti-star,” White said. “I know for a fact that boxing isn’t for him, because I’ve been in boxing for years. All of the boxers wish they were involved with us.”
“So now that we’re involved, literally after this fight is over, I’m going to fly over to see Nick Diaz. We’re going to sit down and talk.”
While White has remained steadfast in his stance that we will not see Strikeforce fighters crossing over to compete inside the Octagon, the current situation with Diaz could force his hand.
Over the last 15 months, Diaz has eliminated all the competition available in the Strikeforce 170-pound division. Truth be told, the welterweight ranks have been sparse from the beginning, and dispatching the likes of Evangelista Cyborg and K.J. Noons is no longer of interest to the ultra-competitive Californian.
Saturday night, UFC welterweight champion Georges St. Pierre could cross off the lone remaining contender to his title within the organization, Diaz’s long-time teammate Jake Shields.
A victory for GSP would leave both champions devoid of legitimate challengers, a situation that would surely lead to make calls for a champion versus champion showdown between the two.