It’s well established at this stage that Strikeforce welterweight champion Nick Diaz has some of the best boxing skills in MMA, but what’s still unknown as momentum continues to build behind a Diaz Vs Jeff Lacy boxing bout is how well he’d fare in that sport.
One man who’d know better than most is Andre Ward, one of boxing’s best fighters and the current WBA Super Middleweight champion. It’s been noted several times recently that Ward has sparred with Diaz a number of times, and reports inside the camp suggested that the MMA fighter had fared well.
What does Ward himself think though?
“I appreciate and admire his courage,” Ward told ESPN.com at the weekend. “It remains to be seen how well he’ll do, though. Nick has good hands, some of the best hands in MMA. But professional boxing is totally different. Totally different.”
The statement is open to interpretation, but from where I’m sitting it’s not exactly a ringing endorsement.
We’re not going to know for sure until he actually gets into the ring and fights, but there’s no question that even a past-his-best Lacy is going to be a tough test for Diaz in what would be only his second ever boxing bout.
Personally I think Diaz would be wise to put his boxing ambitions to one side for now and focus on his MMA career which is currently at an all-time high point, rather than hitting the gamble button and risking the possibility of losing a lot of the momentum he’s built up over the past few years.