Saturday night’s rematch with Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz didn’t quite work out how KJ Noons envisioned. In fact, he wasn’t able to see much of what went down inside the HP Pavilion because of his longer than expected locks. While a pair of scissors can quickly resolve his hair issues, they won’t do much for his broken left hand or jaw courtesy of his bitter rival.
“I just got the results of the X-ray and I know my hand is broke. I broke it in the 2ndRound,” Noons stated at the post-fight press conference. “My jaw is broke. I broke it in 1stRound.
“He’s a soldier. He was the better man. I gotta go back and look at the tape, but I fought all five rounds and I think that says a lot about my character.”
Surprisingly, the Brazilian jiu jitsu black belt opted not to take Noons to the canvas and impose his superior submission skills. Instead, the 170-pound champ stood toe-to-toe with the boxer, winning the majority of the exchanges with his decisive reach advantage.
Noons knew he would have his hands full heading into the mulligan because of Diaz’s refined stand-up game, but he wasn’t expecting for his wonderful weave to contribute to his unanimous decision loss.
“I trained with the hair and I didn’t [think it would be a problem]. I’ll just cut it for next fight,” Noons said. “It was stupid. I don’t know, man. I never grow out my hair, and I grew it out, like, three inches. I’ll cut it for next fight.”
Noons took a controversial TKO (Doctor’s Stoppage) victory over Diaz to capture the EliteXC lightweight title three years ago. Diaz has since moved on to rule Strikeforce’s welterweight class, while Noons has hovered around the 155-pound division. Now that things are knotted up at one apiece, everyone wants to know when the trilogy will go down.
“I think when I came to Strikeforce, that was a fight that people wanted to see,” Noons said. “And I think he said right when I signed … he was like, ‘Who is this guy? Nobody even knows who this guy is.’ So I had to win a couple of fights.
“So if he feels that I have to win a few fights for a rubber match, I’m down for whatever. I don’t really care. I just want to fight and put on exciting fights, and be the best I can be.”