Former interim UFC welterweight champion Carlos Condit had another fight on his radar for UFC 171 prior to being matched up against Strikeforce veteran Tyron Woodley.
The original bout offered to Condit was a rematch against UFC bad boy Nick Diaz, who he fought and defeated by unanimous decision in 2012. Despite the win, Condit received criticism after the fight for using a precise game plan to fight Diaz, instead of standing and trading with the Stockton, Calif. native so the interest in a rematch happened immediately.
As soon as the UFC came calling to offer Condit the fight he accepted without hesitation. Unfortunately, Diaz did not follow suit.
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"The fight was offered to me. I agreed, I thought the first fight there was a lot of controversy after the fact, probably a rematch a lot of people would want to see. A lot of hype, a lot of buzz, it’s the type of fight I want to be in. I pretty much agreed right off the bat," Condit told FOX Sports on Thursday.
"Nick for whatever reason, I’m sure he’s got his reasons, he didn’t take the fight."
The fight was offered to me. I pretty much agreed right off the bat. Nick for whatever reason, I’m sure he’s got his reasons, he didn’t take the fight
— Carlos Condit
Diaz retired following a loss to Georges St-Pierre in 2013, and the UFC has come calling on a couple of different occasions to offer him fights but time after time he’s opted against any return bout. While Diaz would be tempted to return for a title show, with an 0-2 record in his last two fights that’s very unlike to happen.
If he does return, however, Condit is still interested in facing him again.
"In the future, I would be interested in the fight," Condit said. "Rematches are always intriguing, especially when they’re close like that one."
As far as his own title aspirations, Condit didn’t get upset when the UFC opted to pit Johny Hendricks against Robbie Lawler for the vacant welterweight strap after Georges St-Pierre relinquished the belt a few months ago.
Condit will instead face Woodley on the same card where Hendricks battles Lawler, but there is a consolation prize for him at UFC 171.
If Condit wins, the UFC and president Dana White have informed him that a title shot awaits him against the winner of the welterweight title fight.
"Yeah, in maybe not in those words, but pretty much," Condit answered when asked if he was told a title shot is on the line at UFC 171.
Condit fought Hendricks last year to a close decision loss in one of the best fights of 2013, and he’s never faced Lawler during his career. Either way, Condit first has to get past Woodley and then he can watch the main event at UFC 171 with an eye on the ultimate prize of capturing the welterweight gold.