UFC 158: St. Pierre vs. Diaz
Pre-fight press conference
March 14, 2013 Live from the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada
After brief remarks from UFC president Dana White announcing an August event in continuing sponsor Harley Davidson's hometown of Milwaukee, the UFC 158 pre-fight press conference was dominated by Nick Diaz. The Stocton native took the majority of questions, and spoke the majority of the time, in a panel the included White, and GSP, plus Carlos Condit and Johny Hendricks.
Diaz explained he came in late and would have to miss either the open workout or this pre-fight press conference. Spoke later of needing to rid his body of toxins from the flight.
White explained his "come to Jesus" remarks about Nick Diaz.
"I've been saying to Nick Diaz forever," said White. "If he would just play the game this much ***holds up hands*** When you do all this press stuff, I did an hour and a half radio tour. It's the same questions over and over again, but you're talking to people in different areas who haven't heard the answers yet."
Diaz says he is being portrayed as a villain.
"To be honest with you, a lot of times, they're pretty much making me out to be the evil villain," said Diaz. "Georges fits the description as the good guy. Look at my poster. - no offense, but you guys have plenty of time to switch the poster. That picture of me is from years ago. Can I get one buttered up, photoshopped picture in a magazine? I've had plenty of ugly posters, but I know they can do better by me. There's one thing for sure, I will always fight for my dignity."
"They like to make me look like the bad guy. Georges likes to say I remind of a bully that picked on him growing up. How many times have you had a gun to your head, Georges? How many of your best friends have been shot through the chest with a 45 or how many of your best friends have been stomped, put to sleep in a coma? How many people put gum in your hair growing up going back that far.
"I hate everyone pulling the bully card. Everyone hates bullies. If it wasn't for what I went through, who knows if I would have made it in life. Who knows if I'd b here today. I don't go and point the finger and decide that people are the bully who tortured me as a child. I don't want to see anybody hurt. I don't believe anyone out here working towards greatness deserves to be beat down, smashed in. The fans out like violence. People like violence. It's the funniest thing but I like to think I'm not a violent person. I'm a martial artist."
Diaz then accuses the UFC of "selling wolf tickets," which White responds to. Note: Selling wolf tickets is an urban slang term meaning to bluff or threaten someone without intending to back it up with violence. An animated gif at bottom clearly details the process.
"All the stuff that leads up to this thing, all the selling of wolf tickets, all the stuff that leads up to this fight, these two will fight on Saturday night," said White. "Nick Diaz has been around for a long time. All the stuff that Nick Diaz says and does, when he steps into the cage, he fights. We're almost there, it's almost over and these two will fight on Saturday."
Diaz continued his impassioned defense.
"The fans like to say I don't deserve to be here, I haven't beat no top fighters," said Diaz. "I was out there, I was fighting all the hitters. I'm the one risking brain damage, getting smashed out. These guys come out and try to wrestle you out. You take these punches and start quitting early.
"I say Jake Shields and Carlos won the fight. The way the scoring works, the way it's geared towards wrestling. I don't think it's right for martial arts. I think it nullifies the action. If you want to hold people and elbow, I'm gonna have to create the same amount of space on you for the guy to get back to his feet. People should be called for stalling. They should be point deducted for stalling. The ref should be calling for action.
"They'd love to ignore it and not talk about. The strong guy on steroids would like to ignore it and he wants to get the takedown and win the round. I'd love a 10 minute round and see who would work through a 10 minute round."
Diaz was asked about reports he was chasing GSP around the hotel in 2011, but said his stance was defensive.
"Okay, he's coming out of an elevator or something and I stand my ground," said Diaz. "He was trying to walk through me and I'm not gonna let him walk through me. I'm gonna stand there with a hard look on his face and he was trying to get by."
At this point, an incredulous GSP loses his cool.
"You really think I'm scared of you?" blurted out St-Pierre. "You are crazy in the head. We'll see Saturday night if I'm scared of you... I didn't say anything bad. I'm not on steroids."
White says he does not feel marijuana is a performance enhancing drug, but reiterates that it is illegal in the sport. Diaz later said he took his usual precautions to avoid testing positive, but for longer.
As he had the entire conference, Diaz held the cameras until the close, both apologizing and explaining his media event absences.
"t's hard for me to show up in the middle of training, go back and forth putting in a good image and coming off like a madman," said Diaz. "That press conference that I had last time, nobody considered what I was going through. I had a lot of issues with my team. I didn't even have my passport. I couldn't have gone to Montreal.
"I apologize that I'm a no-show. I never walked away from any fights that were less than two people."
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