Nick Diaz’s Coach and Manager Cesar Gracie recently released a statement on his student’s recent no-show for his superfight at the World BJJ-Expo. The statement placed most of the blame on the promoter “Junior” and opponent Braulio Estima. Estima (a 3x world BJJ champion and 2009 ADCC absolute champion) took offense to parts of the statement, namely the assertions that he hid his MMA aspirations, his weight, and about Cesar’s explanation of the night’s events.
Estima responded over twitter stating (misspellings have been corrected):
Hi César I was reading your statement. very interesting points..
1st- When Junior approached me to offer me the fight I was actually training at the Blackzilians at the time so obviously I was training MMA. Junior told me about Nick not wanting to fight an MMA fighter. I never fought before so [Junior] said it was fine & why [didn’t you] cancel the fight before if this was really an issue..??
2nd- Nobody has ever bended no rules for me. Because there was no rules set to start off with, it wasn’t going to be a UFC match but a superfight on a BJJ Expo so the whole point here was for us to show a fight.. has Nick signed a contract that stated the date time and weight that we both need to reach? I didn’t. And since this whole thing was going to be a friendly event I really don’t see any issue here even if Nick turned up 10lbs overweight. Still when asked I went and dropped the weight to meet the requirement. Actually to put things straight it was myself that called Junior around 10pm Friday to check if there is going to be a weigh in at all. He kept contacting you and got back to me saying I need to be 180 that time, of course I said I can’t for the simple reason I was away in Irvine and it was already late at night but I said sure no problem I’ll make it first thing in the morning if needed, even if it would put me in a bigger disadvantage I didn’t care I just came to fight. Junior had actually called me back no later than midnight that he spoke to you and confirmed the weigh in for 10am.
Besides when did Nick actually weigh in? And who witnessed that if we are being so strict and professional?
3rd – You are saying Nick had left by 10am Saturday morning? Why you never said anything then? I even asked you I’d like to see him and his weight and you said he’s not gonna come down because he ate already and wouldn’t make the weight anymore. And Lana, after speaking to you, called his room and said he was actually there sleeping. Nobody at any point had mentioned he could have left. Leaving me believing we would fight till the very last minute, now you’re talking about lack of professionalism in the organisation of the superfight and this was very professional behaviour right?
There is many more points here that I don’t agree with but I am just fed up of this whole situation and don’t agree for anyone to ever release the blame from Nick for whatever reason, we were there to fight and that’s what should happen no excuses, we are both professional athletes and should respect one another no matter what. And this is inexcusable.
Estima’s possible MMA career was never a hidden, but his debut has been delayed multiple times for various reasons. Estima had been set to face Bellator’s Rick Hawn before their card was scrapped due to a legal dispute with the Shine Fights headliner, Ricardo Mayorga.
In the end, it will likely never be fully known what transpired prior to Diaz no-showing the match but it appears that informality of the event combined with the lack of clear communication, between the promoter and both camps, lead to confusion on all sides. What is known is that no one informed the promoters of Nick’s absence and even Cesar Gracie did not acknowledge an issue until he tweeted before Diaz was supposed to walk onto the mat. What is unfortunate is that the no-show has overshadowed what was an amazing display of BJJ from the superfights that did occur.