"We're going to get in some extra training because Friday I'm leaving to LA with my brother," Nate Diaz told me, last Thursday inside he, his brother Nick and coach Randy Spence's Gracie Fighter Lodi academy.
The UFC's New King had just graciously invited me to do some extra closed-door training with some of his team after I'd taken Spence's great jiu-jitsu class, and he was excited about his coming trip South to LA for a specific reason. "We're going to train with Jean Claude Van Damme," he explained.
Yes, really. You can read more on that time with Diaz, soon, in coming features on Nate, including the fifth installment of A week on the road: Visiting & training with California's Finest
Now, there are photos to prove it (below). Nate told me that, like most of us, he and Nick had grown up watching and loving JCVD's martial-arts-based action movies.
He'd met the former kickboxer and told him as much, and they planned on all training together. Jean Claude Van Damme is no stranger to MMA fighters, as he's openly adored and hung out with the likes of Fedor Emelianenko and Georges St-Pierre.
From photos like the above one, it looks like Nate and Nick got their action star time in and the 10 year-old in me who made his first R-Rated flick a Van Damme one (Hard Target, NBD) is super stoked for them. I wonder what techniques they went over...
Did the Diaz brothers show ground techniques to Jean Claude? Did he give them tips on the splits? So many questions!