Nick Diaz returned to DREAM for the first time in two years to face Mach Sakurai in the headline bout of the evening, and emerged with a submission victory.
Diaz has mainly been getting the better of his opponents thanks to his rangey striking style recently, but in the early exchanges it was Sakurai who appeared to be more effective, and so Diaz took the opportunity to seize one of his opponents legs and take him to the mat.
Before long the action was back on the feet and again Sakurai was connecting more cleanly, causing Diaz to clinch and press him up against the cage. They break away and ‘Mach’ goes for the double leg, successfully takes him to the mat.
Diaz is pressed firmly up against the cage but is always a threat from his back and quickly goes for an armbar. Sakurai is in trouble and attempts to escape but goes the wrong way and only aids Diaz cause, forcing him to tap out just moments later.
With this victory Diaz extends his unbeaten run to seven fights, and helps continue Strikeforce’s domination of their DREAM counterparts in recent events both in the U.S and Japan.
The immediate future for Diaz is now unclear due to his part in the recent Strikeforce: Nashville brawl. The word is that he is going to be handed a nine month suspension, though it’s believed that this could be reduced to three months.
As for Sakurai, he falls to his third consecutive defeat, and second armbar loss in a row.