Cesar Gracie Why Won’t You Help Nick Diaz?

Sunday, February 12th, 2012 by Tony Reid

Cesar Gracie is the classic enabler in this case, so much so that he might as well make an appearance as the dad that goes out and scores weed for his drug addicted son on the TV show Intervention. It seems as though the smoker, the joker, the midnight toker named Nick Diaz is never in the wrong in his eyes, even when to the rest of civilization and any sane person anywhere can clearly see otherwise. It’s always the other guys fault. With some of the quotes out of Gracie’s own mouth in reference to a number of subjects including the MMA judges “I don’t think the judges like Nick.” and  ”They are going to find a reason to judge against him” to little Nicky’s issues with the UFC with Cesar again coming to his defense saying “Nick saved the UFC” after filling in for their “Little injured star guy (GSP)”, to whoever else might discipline, take issue with, or oppose Nick Diaz. They all have it wrong in Cesar’s eyes. Well it appears that Cesar is in the wrong here and he needs to wake up. From no showing his way out of a title shot with GSP to the in cage mini riot at Strikeforce in Nashville to the obvious issue with his marijuana usage, somehow, some way Cesar always seems to be the lead attorney in the Diaz Defense, no matter how ridiculously guilty his client is in most of these cases. Even though he may think it’s the right thing to do for Nick, himself and Cesar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu, he’s really not doing Nick or himself any favors. Obviously Nick needs to take responsibility for Nick but with Cesar there backing him at every wrong turn why would he have to?

And on the topic of finances enough is enough with the constant whining and poor-mouthing at every turn. Money is always a topic of discussion with Diaz and Gracie so that begs the, ahem, million dollar question. With Cesar as Nick’s manager and handler, where is all the money going? Diaz earned $200,000 for his interim title fight at UFC 143 against Carlos Condit; he earned another $200,000 for his fight against BJ Penn at UFC 137 and an additional $75,000 for the Fight of the Night bonus that night. In both fights (with Condit and Penn) Diaz earned more money than either Condit ($55,000 fight/ $55,000 win) or Penn ($150,000).These numbers do not even take into account any pay per view cuts, sponsorships or any other form of income he might have. So shut the fuck up about money already. According to figures in 2009 the median income in Stockton, California is $45,730. The money he makes should easily allow him to live in a very nice crib in the 209, have a nice ride and just generally make a nice life for himself. If he’s really as broke as he and Cesar say he is, well, then he might be better off with Bernie Madoff handling his money.

I have personally spoken to Nick Diaz after many, many, many (did I say many?) appointments and scheduled times to talk had come and gone. I was on the east coast and he, obviously, on the west in the 209, so I set my alarm on more than one occasion to get up at 3am and speak to him. No call, no response. He just didn’t feel like it that day. Ok, that’s cool, we can try again and again if need be. So eventually it worked out and only because I somehow got in touch with and spoke to a student who was basically a beginner at the academy that set me up and finally delivered Nick Diaz. Not Cesar you ask? In a word, no. Our conversation was classic. It was one of Nick’s stream -of -consciousness rants more than it was an interview, which is perfectly fine by me. During said rant he spoke often about not having enough money to pay his bills, keep a car or even keep a girl for that matter.  Shortly after I spoke to Nick I wanted to reach out to Cesar because at the time, I just interviewed Nick, we had a great piece of original artwork of him and I had a small MMA inspired clothing company and I wanted to talk to Cesar about the possibility of creating a Nick Diaz signature series shirt. Keep in mind this was a few years back and there weren’t a ton of signature series shirts out in the market. In talking to Cesar he didn’t seem overly interested, or overly nice for that matter and that’s cool, everybody handles business the way they see fit. What raised my eyebrows was a comment/request from Cesar that in order to do the shirt he wanted, well let’s just say north of $10,000 and a nice cut of sales. I, being a small company could only offer a small piece of that puzzle and when I mentioned that he quickly dismissed me and stated that “We have deals on the table everyday like this and we just throw them away.” Again, all fine and good but if you have a client that is telling me two days earlier he can’t make a car payment then you might want to consider taking a few of these “smaller” deals. He also made it clear in no uncertain terms that the kid that helped me get in touch with Nick had no decision making powers or control and was merely a student at the school. I explained to Cesar that the kid I talked to never made any indication that he was anything other than a student there but that I was happy he could help get the interview lined up. At that point I apologized for wasting his time and moved on, not having spoken to him since.

As I digress, let me try to get back to the original point of this piece. So after all this has been said, in my mind this begs the bigger, more important question. Where is Cesar when Nick really needs him? Shouldn’t Mr. Gracie step up, or in, and mentor his young mentee and show him how to take care of the things in life that really matter such as developing lasting relationships with others, keeping his word as a man, handling responsibilities, budgeting money and things of this nature? If Jiu-Jitsu really is a lifestyle how can all of this not be a part of helping a young man, in obvious trouble, develop as a person? Especially someone you have known for so long and supposedly care so much about. Its time for Cesar Gracie to step up and help a struggling Nick Diaz in the ways he needs it most and that’s not on the mats at the Cesar Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Academy.