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Daley calls for title shot, wants Koscheck TUF season

ESPN staff
June 15, 2011
Paul Daley talks to ESPN

Paul Daley is yet to find out whether his upcoming fight with Evangelista Cyborg Santos will be for the vacant Strikeforce title, but he has outlined his plan to win the belt and then rematch Nick Diaz.

Daley has four fights left on his current Strikeforce deal and, after Diaz vacated his welterweight crown to fight Georges St-Pierre, it would seem to make sense that his two most recent opponents battle to become the next champion.

"Nothing's been said but, to me, it makes sense," Daley said on the ESPN UFC Podcast. "Nick Diaz vacates the title, we were the last two guys to contend for the Strikeforce welterweight title, so it's the only thing that makes sense to me.

"I would suggest, if I was promoting it, that the next fight is for the title."

Daley is coming off one of the most explosive rounds in MMA history, which ended in defeat to Diaz, but he still believes he would beat the American had he not fought over half the bout with his senses scrambled by an early punch.

"I want a Diaz rematch. If Diaz loses to GSP and my fight's for the title, I'll get the title and then use it to line up a rematch with Diaz. I know it's within my power to beat Diaz. It sounds stupid because I lost to him, but had I not have got caught with a certain shot around the two-minute mark, I wouldn't have been fighting on instinct and the fight would have been a lot different.

"He had the ability, the skill or the fortune to land that shot to the temple, which I couldn't recover from with the pace he was setting."

Daley also still has issues with the stoppage, which came just seconds before the end of the first round. Having just seen referee Herb Dean allow Shane Carwin to weather a beating from Junior Dos Santos, Daley's feelings of frustration have only intensified.

"A different ref, a different day... we've recently seen the Jose Aldo v Mark Hominick fight, we've seen the Shane Carwin v Junior Dos Santos fight. Those guys were in far greater trouble than I was and the fight was allowed to go on.

"John McCarthy refereed the Hominick fight and let it continue, but he was different with me. He stopped it with three seconds to go, yet when I landed six shots after Diaz face-planted he didn't even bat an eyelid. There's frustration about that because I think McCarthy is a good ref, but there is no consistency.

"If you're gonna let a fight continue when Hominick's got a big f***ing lump on his head and on numerous times he's in bad spots, you can't stop a championship shot with three seconds to go. I had my guard up, I was kicking Diaz's legs... had Herb Dean been refereeing I think the fight would have been allowed to continue."

Daley's career remains stained by his last UFC fight, when he delivered a post-fight punch to Josh Koscheck. Having allowed time to pass since the incident, Daley joked that he probably should be disappointed that he didn't drop Koscheck with the punch, and he makes it clear that he would be more than happy to have a TUF series involving the American.

"[The punch ] is a bit hard to comment on... but I would have thought I could have thrown a better punch and knock him out, given that Koscheck wasn't expecting it!" quipped Daley.

"[TUF] would be good! That would be very interesting. Would Dana White let it happen? I doubt it. I don't mind TV, I don't mind going up against Koscheck. My season would definitely be interesting because I say things how they are. I don't play up for the cameras. It would be funny."

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