While the MMA community is still rightly focused on the aftermath of Nick Diaz’ hearing and subsequent five-year suspension at the hands of the Nevada State Athletic Commission, Monday night was back to business as usual in terms of fight bookings. However, before we get to that, check out Nick Diaz’ thoughts on his time spent with the NSAC, his suspension, the reasons he became a fighter, and various other topics in this 12-minute interview with MMA Junkie. Of course, in typical Diaz fashion, around the 3-minute mark he says “That’s all I’ve got for you,” and then proceeds to carry on for another 9 minutes (he does it at the 9-minute mark too).
Hopefully the impending appeal from Diaz goes well, because even though I’m not his biggest fan, there’s no way you can’t be rooting for him in this one. Also, MMA without Nick Diaz for five years just seems incredibly dull. As far as the fights booked, they aren’t particularly noteworthy, but one should be a relatively entertaining scrap. UFC 195 added a lightweight bout between Erik Koch and Drew Dober to its slate. Koch, the former intended featherweight title challenger, has fallen on some rough times of late, dropping 3 of his past 4 bouts amidst his move up to 155. He’ll look to get back on track against Drew Dober who is winless in his past two bouts (a loss to Efrain Escudero, and a “loss” that was overturned to a No Contest against Leandro Silva). The loser of this fight could very well end up with a pink slip, which would be a huge blow to either of the 26-year-olds. Koch will likely open as a decent favorite in this one, but he’s become far more difficult to trust of late. The other fight should be decidedly more of a grind, as nearly all Darren Elkins fights are. The wrestler will take a transatlantic trip to Dublin in order to face Scottish Judoka Robert Whiteford. Elkins is coming off of a loss in his last appearance against Hacran Dias, while Whiteford has picked up a pair of wins since falling in his UFC debut. While Whiteford won’t necessarily have the hometown advantage in this one, he at least benefits from a far easier travel schedule than Elkins heading in. Elkins will be the betting favorite in this bout, as he simply has a far higher level of experience and competition than Whiteford heading into the bout.