Carlos Condit pulls upset on Nick Diaz to take UFC interim welterweight title, loser says he’s done


By Steve Cofield

LAS VEGAS — Nick Diaz is brilliant at playing mind games with his opponents. Carlos Condit never took the bait before or during the fight, stuck to the gameplan and outsmarted Diaz to get himself a share of the UFC welterweight title.

Condit moved beautifully all night and landed 60-plus kicks. He never stood in front of Diaz for more than a few seconds. It all added to a unanimous decision victory, 48-47, 49-46 and 49-46, in the main event of UFC 143 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center.

Condit picks up the UFC’s interim welterweight belt. The champion Georges St-Pierre is sidelined until late 2012 after undergoing surgery for a torn ACL. UFC president Dana White couldn’t say for certain before the fight if the winner tonight would sit out 8-9 months until GSP is ready.

Condit was a pretty big underdog at plus-185. The Diaz-GSP fight was expected to be one of the fights of 2012. A St-Pierre-Condit fight won’t have the sizzle, but it should be a helluva fight based on what the new interim champ showed tonight.

Diaz’s behavior is nearly impossible to predict. He shocked few by complaining about the decision, but then threw everyone for a loop saying he’s had it with the sport.

“I’m not going to accept this as a loss. I pushed him back all fight. I’m happy for Carlos and his family, but I think I’m done with MMA,” said Diaz.

Diaz is just 29 years old and one of the rising stars of the sport. He’s got a bright future with massive earning potential.

“I don’t need this [expletive]. He ran from me this whole fight. I landed the harder shots.. He kicked me in the leg with little baby kicks. I don’t want to play this game no more. I’m out of this [expletive],” said Diaz.

The judges made the right call. The first round was tough to call with Condit starting out strong and Diaz closing well. Condit ran a little too much in the second and lost the round. He corrected his mistake from there and was simply brilliant in the final three rounds. Diaz stalked him for 15 more minutes ate kick after kick. By the time Diaz tried to settle and throw Condit was nowhere to be found. He scooted out of the way in most cases it looked like a classic Diaz 10-12 punch flurry was coming. The work to Diaz’s legs really sapped him late. He looked a step slow in the final round.

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