UFC 143 Results: Condit's Performance Proved He Has What It Takes to Be Champion

Andrew BarrCorrespondent IFebruary 5, 2012

Getty images
Getty images

Carlos Condit defeated Nick Diaz at UFC 143 and became the UFC's interim welterweight champion.

It was a unanimous decision victory, but was considered controversial by some.

Condit spent much of the fight backpedaling, giving some the notion that Diaz should have won the fight purely based on aggression.

However, as fightmetric.com will attest, it was Condit who landed more strikes throughout the fight and, as Diaz' face will attest, it was also Condit who did the most damage.

Should a fighter who lands more strikes and does more damage lose a fight, just because of the direction he's moving in?

That's not a question I am qualified to answer, but there is one thing we can all agree on: Carlos "The Natural Born Killer" did not fight the way we are used to seeing him fight against Diaz.

Thus far, Condit has faced heavy criticism for his uncharacteristically reserved strategy, with some going so far as to say his performance was bad for the sport.

However, this writer is inclined to disagree.

Condit's performance last night was borderline brilliant and showed the world why he has what it takes to be champion and why Diaz does not. Condit's strategy last night was smart.

Diaz is able to sucker most of his opponents into brawling with him, and that ends up being their demise. Condit, aware of this fact, stuck to a strict game plan and forced Diaz into a more technical striking match.

If Condit had been as aggressive as we are used to seeing, he would have been playing into Diaz's hands.

A great champion can acknowledge that sometimes the most entertaining style of fighting isn't the smartest one, and then analyze each of his opponents individually to come up with a perfect game plan.

A champion must not only physically gifted but also a master strategist, and at UFC 143 Condit showed us he possesses both of those qualities.

Andrew Barr is a Featured Columnist for BleacherReport.com. For updates on what's happening in the world of MMA, follow him on Twitter @AndrewBarr8