By: Mike Thorwart
Photo By: MMA Junkie
It’s the Superbowl, tied 35-35, 4th and 2 on your opponents 30 yard line and you go for it instead of kicking a field goal. It’s like the bottom of the 9th in the 7th game of the World Series, 2 outs, score is tied, and you decide to bunt because you think you can outrun the throw to first. This is how I sum up the Nate Diaz vs. Cowboy Cerrone fight.
As much as it pains me to write this, because I am such a huge Cerrone fan, it’s something that I feel like I have to do.
With a win at UFC 141, I would have said Cerrone deserves the next shot at UFC Lightweight gold, or his next fight would determine the #1 contender. Things came to a screeching halt as Nate Diaz (in my opinion) worked Cerrone like I haven’t seen in a long time.
However, this is not because I think Diaz is a better fighter, but because Cerrone chose to scrap instead of win. I truly still believe that Donald Cerrone is the better fighter of the two and if they were to ever fight again, the out come would show that.
From the opening bell, when Cerrone ran across the cage to throw blows, I had a feeling it wasn’t going to end well for Cowboy as he was drug right into the sort of fight that both Diaz brothers like to be in. Diaz basically picked Cerrone apart the entire first round and part of me thought Diaz was going to TKO or KO him in the first as well.
In the second round it got a little interesting but mostly frustrating. On the feet overall, you would see Cerrone as having the better stand up. (Boxing is not stand up, it’s just boxing). I am talking overall stand up. Quite a few times throughout the course of the fight, Cerrone swept his legs out from underneath Diaz, only allowing Diaz to stand back up. I felt like I was going to lose my voice I was screaming so loud. I couldn’t believe what I was watching.
Cerrone would let Diaz stand back up, Diaz would hit a ton of combinations, Cerrone would kick his legs out, and it would be the same thing over and over again. I just didn’t understand.
Now, I am not a mixed martial artist by any stretch of the imagination but, when you are on a six fight win streak and knocking at the door to UFC gold, you go into that octagon to win fights and to become a champion. This is not what I saw at UFC 141. I saw a guy trying to prove a point (and losing that point) instead of trying to become a champion.
I am not taking anything away from Diaz as I think he is a warrior and a very tough guy, I just think that Cerrone is the better overall fighter. Also, this is not to disrespect Donald Cerrone at all. I think he will be back, better then ever and will most likely never do this again.
I still think we will see UFC gold around the waste of Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone. It just may not come as soon as I originally thought.