clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Morning Report: Diego Sanchez 'loving' featherweight, but still wants fights with Gilbert Melendez, Joe Lauzon and Nate Diaz

New, comments
Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

It's been a while since we've seen Diego Sanchez in the Octagon.

After winning the first season of 'The Ultimate Fighter' a decade ago as a middleweight, Sanchez has spent 18 months dropping from lightweight to 145 pounds.

Checking in with his old friend Kenny Florian, Sanchez discussed the transition with someone who took the plunge, himself.

"Going down to featherweight, training with these smaller guys has benefited me in not getting injured so much," Sanchez told Florian and fellow UFC commentator Jon Anik. "For most of my career I was also training with the big guys at Jackson's MMA. Doing the [heavier weight] class, training with Carlos Condit, Derek Brunson and I've even had my rounds with Jon Jones. Andrei Arlovski, too.

"It's really been a different approach. At 33, I need to be more careful of my brain and taking brain damage. I made a decision. If I don't change my training then my longevity is done. I'm going to be retired before you know it."

Citing issues finding his range and being forced to fight inside with taller opponents, Sanchez is excited about turning the tables.

"Height advantage, reach advantage and just having more leverage," said Sanchez. "That's something that went into my decision. I had to say, 'OK, are you going to sacrifice some muscle and a little power to have an extra inch or two on your opponent?' That's the evolution. I don't want to take any more damage than I have to."

Sanchez faces former contender Ricardo Lamas Nov. 21 at The Ultimate Fighter Latin America 2 Finale, but says he's still got his eye on a few names back at 155 pounds.

"To be honest, I really do think I'm going to stay [at featherweight]," said Sanchez. "But the truth is there's some good fights at 155, too. I like the Joe Lauzon fight that almost happened. I think that's an exciting, fun fight. Who the hell wouldn't want to see a Gilbert Melendez vs. Diego Sanchez II? Nate Diaz is a fight that I always wanted to make happen. I'm not going to rule out 155 but I've taken a loving to this new weight class."

Star-divide

5 MUST-READ STORIES

'I can't stand the guy.' Royce Gracie explains why he's returning to fight Ken Shamrock in Bellator. "I'm gonna beat him up one more time just to show the first time wasn't a fluke."

'We will have fights.' Freddie Roach says Georges St-Pierre's six-week trial training camp will include actual fights held behind closed doors. "That's part of process of getting to know if you still want to do this."

'Unbalanced chi.' UFC vet Alan Belcher says retirement was more of a business decision than anything else.

Monday Morning Analyst. Luke Thomas reviews the top technical action from UFC Fight Night: Belfort vs. Henderson 3 and Bellator 145.

‘I just don't think it's a good style match-up.' Miesha Tate predicts Ronda Rousey will beat Holly Holm at UFC 193.

Watch The MMA Hour with Royce Gracie, Freddie Roach, Ryan Bader, Stephen Thompson, Alan Belcher, Louis Smolka and Erick Silva in studio.

Star-divide

MEDIA STEW

Star-divide

UFC 193 Embedded episode 1.

Star-divide

Dan Hardy breaks down Jedrzejczyk vs. Letourneau and Hunt vs. Bigfoot.

Star-divide

Conor McGregor expects Jose Aldo to fight with too much emotion.

Star-divide

Highlights from around the regional scene.

Star-divide

Johnny Case parties after his win in Brazil.

Star-divide

Gina Carano beats up on Dave Bautista.

Star-divide

Long watches.

Pirate Life with Tait Fletcher - Episode 41. Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone

Star-divide

TWEETS

Star-divide

Sounds like Cro Cop could be done.

Dragi prijatelji,morao sam na žalost otkazati borbu u Seoulu.vec u pocetku priprema ozljedio sam rame i to tako da nisam...

Posted by Mirko Filipovic on Monday, November 9, 2015

Star-divide

Get well soon.

Bath filled with ice does the body good.

Posted by Stipe Miocic on Monday, November 9, 2015


Star-divide

Beef.

I am asking for Vitor Belfort for my next fight. Not because he is slower and fatter (even though he is) or because he...

Posted by Tim Kennedy MMA Fan Page (Official) on Monday, November 9, 2015

Star-divide

Camping.

Star-divide

Excited?

Star-divide

Impressive.

Star-divide

Nice to see.

Star-divide

Keep practicing.

#fail @ziggyssmokeshop @209ziggys

A video posted by nickdiaz209 (@nickdiaz209) on


Star-divide

FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Announced yesterday (Nov. 9 2015)

Masenori Kanehara vs. Michael McDonald at UFC 195: Lawler vs. Condit

Kron Gracie vs. Asen Yamamoto at Rizin Fighting World Grand Prix 2015

Star-divide

Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me up on Twitter @SaintMMA and we'll include it in tomorrow's column.