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By Wade Keller, MMATorch Supervising Editor
I like this decision to rematch Nick Diaz against Carlos Condit a lot. It makes sense on almost every level, I'm surprised anyone is against it.
Here are some pluses:
-The Interim Welterweight Title will be defended before November. That's a long time for a fighter in his prime while healthy to sit around waiting.
-The match was very, very close. Those who feel Carlos Condit won believe he did so, for the most part, in close yet decisive fashion. In other words, they feel strongly he edged out Diaz in a close fight. Diaz supporters believe he was robbed and "obviously won." The fact that there's so much contention over this, it makes sense to let them fight rounds 6-10, basically.
-I'm for rematches in general, when the situation calls for it. I really don't understand the general resistance to rematches that some have. When a fight is this close and this controversial, and when there's no one else obviously in line for a title shot, it makes sense. Diaz didn't lose decisively. He's still regarded as a top three fighter in his division along with the Interim Champ and the sidelined regular title holder.
-I like rematches because I think fighters learn from fighting one another, and they can take those lessons into a rematch and decide to hold course with the same strategy but risk being predictable, or change strategies. It's intriguing to me what Condit will do differently and what Diaz will do differently now that they've this familiar with one another.
-This opens up the possibility for Diaz vs. GSP to happen after all. If Condit loses to Diaz decisively, Diaz deserves the shot against GSP. He was first in line anyway before the whole press conference fiasco and the subsequent chain of events.
-If Condit beats Diaz in the rematch, it will diminish the sourness some people would have felt about the GSP vs. Condit title unification match. It will be easier to swallow that Diaz has to "get back in line" to earn a shot if he loses to Condit in the rematch, even to those who believe he deserved the judges' scores last weekend.
-If Diaz wins, Condit is 1-1 against him and should be one fight (at most) away from facing the winner of GSP vs. Diaz anyway. So GSP vs. Condit can still happen even if Condit loses to Diaz in the rematch. I wouldn't have a problem, as I wrote hours after Saturday's fight, if they guaranteed Condit a match against the GSP-Diaz winner, win or lose in the Diaz rematch. If Condit loses to Diaz in the rematch, then Diaz beats GSP, that sets up the "rubber match" between Diaz and Condit for the title early in 2013. If GSP beats Diaz, then Condit should get the match he was once promised against GSP and only lost out on due to injury.
-UFC is going to make money, and more important Diaz and Condit will make money between now and November.
-Rematches are called for after very close fights. Rematches happen in team sports all the time. In the NFL division rivals battle each other twice per year. In the NBA and NHL and MLB playoffs, the Best of Seven Series usually intensity as the series progress.
-55 percent of 1,500+ voting in the MMATorch online poll wanted to see a Diaz vs. Condit rematch right away.
-I don't see a reasonable case to be against the above points. Diaz fans should be happy he gets a chance to prove he is better and then go on to face GSP in an MMA dream fight. Condit fans should be happy that he has a chance to shut up the Diaz fans. In a way, Dana White couldn't have scripted a better scenario for the Welterweight Division in 2012 given GSP's injury. I can't wait.
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Jamie Penick, editor-in-chief
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