It is no surprise to informed MMA fans that the Diaz brothers are not the most well-liked individuals in the UFC. They often come off as harsh and offensive. It's almost like these guys wake up on the wrong side of pillow each morning and are not afraid to talk about it.
According to UFC President Dana White, Donald Cerrone can have an abrasive personality as well. But, in his UFC 141 matchup with Nate Diaz, Cerrone has easily taken on the role of the good guy. As is famous among online readers at this point, Cerrone approached Diaz in October before UFC 137 and was met with a slap on the hand and a profanity.
Cerrone had no previous beef with Nate Diaz and was simply trying to greet a fellow martial artist. The act of disrespect got the attention of the "Cowboy." At the press conference for UFC 141 this Thursday both fighters downplayed the incident to reporters, saying that it was blown out of proportion.
However, things quickly got heated when, during the customary staredown, Cerrone made a verbal jab which prompted Diaz to slap the hat off of the head of Donald Cerrone and a hard shove followed. Dana White himself broke the pair up.
So, who is the jerk in this situation? The answer is clearly Nate Diaz. Donald Cerrone may not be the nicest man on the planet but it isn't too hard to come off as the hero against a guy who shoots himself in the foot over and over.
I personally felt that Nate Diaz should have been reprimanded or cut from the UFC following his blatant involvement in the now-famous 2010 brawl after the main event of Strikeforce Nashville. The UFC saw fit to keep him, yet he and his brother continue this foolish behavior like they think they have an endless amount of credit with the UFC brass.
Nate's older brother Nick has had his fair share of controversy. Nick Diaz won a superb 2007 battle with Takanori Gomi in Japan and was stripped of the win due to a positive test for marijuana. Nick also was cut by the UFC once for brawling in a hospital and cheated himself out of a UFC 137 title fight after he neglected to show up for both of the pre-fight pressers. Instead of trying to follow the company line, Nate Diaz seems to be as disrespectful as his older brother.
The important thing Saturday is the fight and not what the men do when they are out of the cage. So, can Donald Cerrone stop the disrespectful Nate Diaz? I think he is just the man to do that. Cerrone has won all four of his UFC fights and has shown he can grapple, absorb punishment and knock other men silly with his offensive onslaught.
As for the Diaz brothers, there is no way to know how they will act from minute to minute. After his win at UFC 137, Nick Diaz spent little time being gracious or talking positive, choosing instead to go on a rant about wanting to be more compensated.
My advice for Nick Diaz would be to either accept that he will make far less in MMA than in boxing unless he is a top draw or change sports. I think I speak for many people when I say that we are getting weary of his tirades. Either way, this fight at UFC 141 should be a great one.