Dana White was full of big news today. In addition to the five round UFC main events from now on, he also had a little tidbit to offer regarding Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz. Because he will be taking on Georges St. Pierre for the UFC welterweight title at UFC 137, Diaz gave up his Strikeforce title. MMAWeekly has it:
According to UFC President Dana White, Nick Diaz is now a UFC fighter and has vacated his Strikeforce welterweight belt to get a shot at UFC champion Georges St-Pierre.
White stated that Diaz could go back to Strikeforce at some point in the future if he chose, but for now he is strictly a UFC fighter.
As for the Strikeforce welterweight belt, White said that two fighters from that organization will fight later this year to determine a new champion.
Diaz won the title with a first round stoppage of Marius Zaromskis at Strikeforce: Miami in January 2010. He successfully defended the title three times since then, defeating K.J. Noons, Evangelista "Cyborg" Santos, and most recently Paul Daley. While there is no word on who will contend for the newly vacant title, Daley and Tyron Woodley would be the logical favorites in a shallow Strikeforce welterweight division. Santos is scheduled to take on Tarec Saffiedine in late July, but no other meaningful welterweight fights are on the horizon for Strikeforce. This leaves Gilbert Melendez as the sole Cesar Gracie-trained champion in the organization.