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Georges St. Pierre vs Nick Diaz Head to Head: Who will leave UFC 158 victorious?
There’s a couple things I have to address before we get started here.
First of all, this is by far the most complicated, difficult, fascinating, complex and yet extremely fun fight that I’ve ever had to write a “head to head” article for, so I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did writing it.
Second of all, the opinions on this fight and both of these individual fighters range soo dynamically across such a vast spectrum that I guarantee most of you are going to disagree with my assessement.
But you know what? To each their own, all I can do is try to look at the fight from a completely fair and neutral point of view, allowing both fighters a clean slate to convince me that they have a chance at winning.
I’d also like to note that this fight is soo complex that I’m going to have to introduce a new category or two in order to properly analyze each fighter and their unique advantages.
With all that out of the way let’s get this thing started.
Striking: 50 – 50
Oh boy, I’m gonna get torn apart for this one I can already feel it.
First off let me explain that this category is not called “Punching” or “Boxing” it is called “Striking”. Therefore I must judge each fighter based on their proficiency at striking with all 4 limbs and all 8 potential points of attack in all areas of the fight and on the mat.
With that said, many believe that Diaz is one of the best boxers in MMA, while I’m on the fence regarding the accuracy of that statement I will say that he is very unorthodox, which in turn has proven to be very effective. Georges on the other hand is very much by the book. He’s got all the basics down real well and has a very solid boxing game.
At the end of the day Georges utilizes a slightly more dynamic striking offense using more knees, elbows and kicks than his opponent does on average. I also believe that training for a few years with Freddie Roach holds some serious weight in the boxing world, which I’m convinced will translate to GSP being a pretty solid boxer at the very worst. Overall Georges has the stronger, better and faster jab, which could prove to be a significant weapon in the fight.
But aside from those attributes, Diaz is the one who has the much higher output and volume of strikes, stringing together more proficient and effective combinations while also maintaining a more dynamic boxing game in terms of transitioning from the body to the head and varying his targets.
With that said, I personally believe that both fighters are proficient strikers, but each individual does a few unique things better than the other in certain aspects within the entire field of striking.
I therefore cannot in good faith give either fighter a distinct advantage in this area. So deal with it.
Jiu-Jitsu: 60 – 40 Diaz
Just like striking, this category is extremely difficult to breakdown, but I’m going to try my best. First off, good Jiu-Jitsu isn’t simply about submissions or even defense against submissions, it’s about positioning, control and timing.
In the latter Georges takes the cake. St. Pierre has some of the absolute best top control and Jiu-jitsu positioning in mixed martial arts history. Some of his success in this area can be attributed to an amalgamation of wrestling techniques within his jiu-jitsu, but it is still effective all the same.
Georges overall ground game is very good, his submission defense in particular is great, as is his offense. In fact both may even be better than we realize because of how often Georges has choosen to remain in an advantageous position and do damage rather than attempt any submissions.
Georges has also only ever been submitted once early in his career by Matt Hughes. With that said I have no doubt in my mind that should Georges land a takedown, he would dominate anyone on the ground positionally including Nick Diaz. Passing guard, keeping control and staying out of danger in the process.
Nick Diaz on the other hand requires no compliments when discussing his grappling skills on the mat. Next to Demian Maia, he is by far the most dangerous jiu-jitsu practitioner in the Welterweight division by far. Diaz is both very slick and very quick when put in any situation on the mat.
His transitions between submissions are elite as well as his ability to quickly take advantage of errors or guard passing attempts. Diaz is amazing at generating opportunities and making holes to fit his limbs into and force you to rethink your course of action.
With all of that said, both fighters are amazing at the discipline but I give a slight advantage in pure Jiu-jitsu to Nick.
Wrestling: 80-20 GSP
There is no surprise here, this section is going to be real short. And oddly enough this is probably one of the largest margins I’ve ever given between two fighters before.
Georges is the best functional MMA wrestler in the UFC, and Diaz is notoriously bad at wrestling. I’m sure he has some decent takedown defense due to experience alone, but neglects training in the discipline and doesn’t seem to see much need for it in the cage, which is why you can expect to see Diaz on his back on multiple occasions within this fight. Georges is just simply on another level when it comes to wrestling, and that’s undeniable.
Strategy/Gameplan: 90-10 GSP
I felt this category was necessary for the simple fact that, it could potentially be the one element that decides the outcome of the entire fight.
Diaz isn’t what I would call an intelligent fighter, and I don’t mean the IQ kind of intelligence either. But he is extremely resilient, super durable has an insane pace and work ethic, not to mention a ton of heart and great fight instincts.
Georges on the other hand is a tactician in it’s purest form. The man is the brawlers worst nightmare, simply because this is a guy that knows his opponent better than he knows himself and plans accordingly.
If you think you’re hands are superior, he’ll strike with you just long enough to put you on your back when you find your rhythm. And if you think you’re an ace on the ground, well then he’ll take you down, land a few strikes and either get up or change position before you have an opportunity to set anything up.
The man is a fight genius and has even admitted to the fans and media that he isn’t physically better or more talented than any other fighter in his division. He wins with his mind, using solid strategy and efficiency with the power of his brain. And that my friends, is fascinating.
Both fighters are in great physical condition, have cardio for days and a ton of heart. While it’s kind of impossible to know for sure, I think Diaz may have the better chin, although he isn’t a heavy hitter by any means either.
Regardless I don’t think any of that will matter, because with all of those advantages listed above, I expect Georges to put the pace in cruise control and fight a dominant 25mins en route to a unanimous decision.
Let us know your scores below! How do you see the fight? Give us your breakdown.