UFC lightweight Josh Thomson is definitely familiar with Cesar Gracie’s camp after a trilogy of tilts involving Gilbert Melendez. However, Thomson knows his opponent this weekend – Nate Diaz – is a completely different fighter than “El Nino”. Where Melendez utilizes his wrestling and power, Diaz tends to pick opponents apart while standing rather than gun for a knockout and is a much bigger threat when it comes to submissions. He’s also left-handed and lanky.
As such, Thomson knows he’s in for a stiff test on Saturday night, telling the UFC’s website he may not be able to guarantee victory but he’ll at least go on record saying fans should definitely enjoy what unfolds in the Octagon at UFC on FOX 7.
“It’s going to be a tough fight. I think Georges St-Pierre kind of said it the right way; it’s hard to find guys who are of the style of Nick [Diaz, older brother] and Nate. It’s hard to find a long, good boxer that’s left-handed. It’s hard to find those and to find one that’s good on the ground. I don’t really know anyone in the sport that has those skills,” assessed Thomson. “So that being said, as far as stylistically, he poses a lot of problems.”
Asked how he plans on handling the difficulty of Diaz’s attack, Thomson explained, “I have to make sure he is on his heels and make sure to keep him guessing and beat him to the punch every time.”
“I’m going to go out there and put on a show,” Thomson concluded on his approach to the upcoming action. “I’ve been in this sport for too long. I wouldn’t say it doesn’t bother me when I lose, but I don’t think about losing when I go out there. I’m just focused on doing the best that I can and putting on a show and making sure I give it all I got. The fans will always get the best out of me knowing that it was what I’m planning on doing.”
Thomson is 19-5 in his career with past wins over Melendez, Gesias Cavalcante, and Pat Healy. By comparison, the 16-8 Diaz has a handful of notable victories to his credit as well as finishes in all but two of his triumphs.
PHOTO CREDIT – MMAWEEKLY