Don Chargin Productions sent along the following press release regarding Nick Diaz's change of plans to not enter the boxing ring:
Northern California, May 23, 2011 – Mixed Martial Arts Champion, Nick Diaz will continue pursuing his Mixed Martial Arts career instead of professional boxing as it has been deemed that it be in Nick's best interest to focus on his primary combat sport and profession.
Team Diaz had contemplated transitioning over to the boxing world in a legitimate attempt to pursue a high-level boxing career. These discussions began in 2009 with long-time boxing promoter, Don Chargin and proceeded up until recent times.
Never before in the history of both sports had a pound-for-pound MMA combatant in his prime had the desire or been contractually free to attempt to transition over to boxing.
The landscape of Mixed-Martial Arts moves at a rapid pace and while Diaz's chance to make history, becoming the first true cross-over MMA star to enter the boxing ring, an opportunity arose for Nick to make a different sort of history in his primary field of fighting.
Don Chargin states, “Nick is a good kid and a very exciting fighter. Right now he has an opportunity of a lifetime as it pertains to his MMA career. While I don't doubt that Nick and his team were serious about taking the big step into boxing, it only makes sense for him to finish what he started and see how far he can go in MMA before he does anything in boxing. It's all about timing… we began these discussions over two years ago and nobody would have imagined the type of demand that there currently is for Nick as a mixed martial artist.”
Cesar Gracie (Nick's manager) states, “There are some people that have said we were just posturing to go into professional boxing and they don't understand that this thing is something we had been working on since 2009. It wasn't just out of nowhere but at this point in time, there's a certain chance that comes along once in a very long while and it only makes sense to stick to MMA as of right now. Nick's been working really hard to get to this point in his MMA career and it wouldn't make sense for us to make that transition into boxing right now. If this were a couple months ago or if certain fights had played out differently, we'd definitely be ready to go into boxing, but that's not how it played out. Don Chargin is a great boxing promoter and he understood our dilemma completely and I thank him for that.”
While the intrigue for the proposed Nick Diaz-Jeff Lacy bout had drawn a massive amount of media interest in its rumored status, this type of cross-over match-up will have to take place at a later date.
Diaz's MMA career will undoubtedly have some major changes within a short while as he's ready to transition into the next phase of his fighting career.
Don Chargin continued, “I've had a long promotional career filled with numerous big events dating back the 1960s. Taking Nick Diaz into boxing would have undoubtedly been a big one but this is Nick's career and his legacy as a MMA fighter needs to be solidified now. I wish him all the luck going forward and know that Zuffa will have itself one very exciting fighter for many years to come.”