Georges St. Pierre vs. Nick Diaz is the greatest fight to never happen.
But there's still time, right?
All the buildup and hype behind a fight between the champion St. Pierre and challenger Nick Diaz was all for naught. Diaz and St. Pierre will never be in the Octagon together.
As unfortunate as this may be, it becomes painfully clear that this fight can't happen when the facts are examined.
St. Pierre didn't suffer a minor injury that'll keep him out for a few weeks. He suffered a complete tear of his ACL—a serious injury that'll keep him out of the sport for nearly a year.
The most immediate consequence of this is that he obviously can't compete against Diaz at UFC 143. Carlos Condit has stepped in to face the Stockton brawler, but that's not the fight that fans truly want to see.
Fans have missed St. Pierre and Diaz at UFC 137, when Diaz abdicated his media responsibilities, and was therefore ejected from the title fight by UFC president Dana White. And now fans have missed the much-anticipated bout for a second time.
The main question now becomes, will we ever see this fight happen?
Not in 2012, and not ever.
Let's first examine St. Pierre's recovery time. Assuming he'll be back in 10 months as estimated, that makes him set to return around October 2012.
Condit vs. Diaz is taking place in February 2012.
So the winner of Condit-Diaz will either have to wait eight months to fight St. Pierre, or fight one of the many other deserving welterweight contenders in the meantime.
If the latter option is taken, there's no guarantee that Diaz will ever meet St. Pierre, since Diaz's wrestling has always been his Achilles' heel, and strong welterweight wrestlers like Jake Ellenberger, Jon Fitch, and Josh Koscheck will tear Diaz apart before St. Pierre can get to him.
This is all assuming that Diaz even makes it past Condit, which isn't a certainty either.
While Diaz's chances against Condit are better than they were against St. Pierre, they still aren't that great.
Condit's striking is more dynamic and powerful than any fighter Diaz has faced so far, and Diaz's patented "Stockton Slap" may not faze Condit.
Also, Condit's heavy hands may present problems for Diaz, whose striking defense isn't quite up to par (if you remember, he was rocked badly several times by Paul Daley).
St. Pierre-Diaz is a fight that the MMA world wants to see for one reason or another. Unfortunately, a lot of things can go badly over the 10 months St. Pierre will be out.
Tthe greatest welterweight fight of all time may be one that never exists.