Nick Diaz To Challenge Georges St. Pierre In Early 2012Fresh off of his dominant decision victory over “The Prodigy” B.J. Penn on Saturday night, former Strikeforce titleholder Nick Diaz has vaulted back into the number one contender spot at 170 pounds. Diaz will now challenge UFC Welterweight Champion Georges “Rush” St. Pierre on February 4, 2012.

UFC President Dana White announced the change following UFC 137 last night. Carlos Condit, who was originally set to face St. Pierre on Saturday’s card, has agreed to step aside to allow Diaz to get the next shot at the title. Diaz and St. Pierre, themselves, were first set to face off at UFC 137.

Diaz (26-7-0, 1 ND) lost his title shot against St. Pierre (22-2-0) when he was removed from the UFC 137 main event after failing to appear at a pair of mandatory pre-fight press conferences. St. Pierre was instead matched up against Condit, but withdrew from the card after suffering a knee injury. Diaz, facing off against Penn, was once again elevated to the main event and picked up arguably the biggest victory of his career with a commanding Unanimous Decision.

Following his win over Penn, Diaz stated in his post-fight interview that he believed that St. Pierre was not actually injured and is scared to fight him. St. Pierre reportedly took great exception to Diaz’s comments and campaigned to face Diaz in his next title defence, rather than Condit. White obliged and confirmed the Diaz versus St. Pierre title tilt last night.

Diaz systematically picked Penn apart with his striking, as he has done in a number of other recent fights, but he will likely be taken down early and often by St. Pierre. Diaz remains a serious threat from his back due to his strong jiu-jitsu skills, but St. Pierre, though at times criticised for not having the most exciting fights, has defeated nearly all of his recent opponents in dominant fashion.

Diaz and St. Pierre will square off on an as-yet-unannounced UFC card on February 4, 2012, as part of the promotion’s annual Super Bowl weekend event.



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