KJ Noons returned to action this past Wednesday, scoring the first round KO against Sam Stout and extending his win streak to two. After competing most of his career as a lightweight in Strikeforce, Elite XC, Dream and the UFC, Noons agreed to face Stout at welterweight just 24 hours before the TUF Nations finals, and looked impressive at 170 pounds.
Taking just 30 seconds to put Stout’s lights out, ‘King’ is considering making the welterweight division his new home. Check out what he had to say to MMAJunkie.com:
“I saw him the day before weigh-ins,” Noons said. “We met each other, and we saw that we were kind of the same weight, and we did not have that much weight to lose. He said, ‘Why kill ourselves? Why don’t we put on a great fight and fight at what we would be at after weigh-ins anyway?’ So I could tell I was different by not having to cut that weight. I felt great, I didn’t feel bloated, and my body felt awesome. I feel at 170 like I feel at 155. I just feel healthier.”
Noons certainly looked like a killer against Stout, who is no slouch, and perhaps the added bonus of less weight to cut may sway his decision. Both the light and welterweight divisions have plenty of exciting match ups to offer, but Noons feels like welterweight is the healthier division:
“You deplete your kidneys by cutting weight and dehydrate your heart. You never know. I personally think when you dehydrate so much – this isn’t medical – but I feel like you can get knocked out easier because you can’t recover as fast. We don’t want people to be slurring because of head trauma and cutting weight.”
Weight cutting issues have been around forever in combat sports, and the dangers are inherent. I think more fighters should compete at their more natural weight, but the loss of physical advantages is what keeps guys taking the risk. Who would be next in line for Noons you ask?
“I’m down to bring Nick Diaz out of retirement for our rubber match,” Noons said. “I feel like I’m back. I’m down for 170, I’m down for 155.”
Diaz and Noons both hold one victory over each other; Noons bashed Diaz to a doctor’s stoppage in just one round back in 2007, but the 209 bad boy got his revenge with a dominant five round decision win during their 2010 Strikeforce title fight. A third bout could well be a reality, if Diaz weren’t retired and asking for half a million dollars per fight.
If he does come back, who takes the win in the trilogy bout?