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"You think you’re so tough because you spent five years in Hell? I was born in it "
—Ricardo Diaz to Oliver Queen[src]


Ricardo Diaz, known by the alias Dragon, is a crime lord and drug kingpin who manufactured an illegal drug akin to steroids derived from Vertigo while maneuvering a huge criminal organization. He was a member of Cayden James's criminal cabal and, unknowingly to Cayden James at the time, the one that had his son Owen Post killed in order to manipulate him and letting the hacker "thin the herd" for him. Following the disbandment of the cabal, Diaz murders Cayden and reveals his intentions to take over Star City inglobating on his payroll numerous politicians, judges, and policemen both in the city and in the country, Laurel Lance and the Bratva led by Anatoly Knyazev, eventually becoming one of the four members of the massive criminal empire known as the Quadrant of which he subsequently became the leader after having two members killed. However as Oliver Queen/Green Arrow turned himself over to the FBI in exchange for their help in taking down Diaz (as well as both Laurel and Anatoly betraying him for Team Arrow), his criminal empire began falling, his entire influence over Star City was destroyed and he was forced into hiding with his new allies; the Longbow Hunters.

Biography

Early life

Ricardo Diaz was born in Starling City and had a tough childhood by spending his early years trying hard to make his father proud of him even if it meant pretending to be someone he wasn't, until the latter died and he was sent to Zandia Orphanage sometime before 1986.[1][2]

Young Diaz at Zandia Orphanage

Young Diaz at Zandia Orphanage.

While growing up at the orphanage, Diaz was forced to fight for every scrap of food he could get. Also, he was often bullied and mentally scarred by an older boy named Jesse Federico. Jesse tortured him by burning his forearms and attempted to destroy the last picture that he had of his late father. Diaz reached into the flames of the burning bucket to get the picture back, resulting in extreme burns and blisters. Jesse made Diaz act as his "servant" and treated him like an animal, even going as far as to call him a "loser", something that stuck by Diaz even into his adult life. In order to contain the anger and fear instilled into him during his childhood, Diaz named it "The Dragon", doing everything possible to "control it, so that it does not control him".[2]

Growing up, he joined The Scorpions, an organized crime group operating in the Glades of Starling City, eventually becoming known under the alias "Dragon" and getting an impressive criminal record. However, at some point in his life, he started to operate on his own and became a powerful crime lord heading an illegal drug operation responsible for the production and sale of a steroid derived from Vertigo that increases combat efficiency and concentration, all while remaining off charts and covering up his tracks.[3][4]

Setting up his plot

In 2013 he began planning his rise to power as a major crime lord.[2] Four years later, in early 2017, Diaz hired Karl Iscove to kill Owen Post - the son of master hacktivist and Helix's leader Cayden James - while wearing an hooded costume in order to influence James and make him start a war with Green Arrow. Then, he killed Iskov to tie up loose ends and doctored a photo of Oliver as Green Arrow; though it is unknown how he knew the Green Arrow's real identity.[5]

Later in the year, Diaz leaked the photo to the FBI of Oliver Queen as the Green Arrow, thus placing the mayor under indictment, arousing controversy and suspicion towards him and limiting his work as a vigilante.[6][7]

Ricardo Diaz's criminal record

Diaz's criminal record.

Over time, Diaz took over his former gang, The Scorpions, becoming their leader,[8] however, at some point after that, he was arrested and sentenced to a life sentence without conditional release, but the charges against him were dropped by the Supreme Court because of some unspecified quibbles and he was then freed.[3]

Drug dealing

Dragon meets Diggle

Dragon meets Diggle.

Less than a month after his release from prison, he sent his men to retrieve the components of a military-grade 3D printer but they were intercepted and defeated by Team Arrow. However Dragon appeared, setting off a smoke bomb and walked away before the heroes caught him. Sometime later, Dragon met John Diggle when he went directly to his steroid manufacturer, hoping to get an extra portion of drugs. Dragon did not give the man what he wanted, saying that he had to be careful because he did not yet have permission from the Food and Drug Administration.

Dragon burns all of his drugs

Dragon burns all of his drugs.

Later that night, Diaz assisted his crew with stealing a 3D military printer, this time from the biological department of Palmer Technologies but as he stepped out of his car he was attacked again by vigilantes, but managed to shoot the Green Arrow before escaping, much to the latter's surprise. Shortly after, Dragon checked the progress in his laboratory when Team Arrow entered the building. Diaz, not wanting the product to fall into their hands, dropped a drum of petrol, lighting it on fire and burning all of his drugs, before escaping from the fire.[3]

Working with Cayden James

Cayden James's criminal cabal

Diaz and the cabal.

He was later contacted by Cayden James to join his criminal cabal. While they were watching via hidden camera the collapse of Team Arrow from their hideout, Dragon declared he was skeptical of how effective the group could be; however James assured him that there was more to come.[9]

Later Diaz, along with James and Black Siren, visited Jerry Bertinelli, asking him to rethink the matter of selling them the port - the last thing in Star City belonging to the Bertinelli crime family - threatening to have his daughter killed if he refused. While James and Laurel were expecting Bertinelli's answer at their lair, the Green Arrow attacked them. However, after Diaz and the rest of the cabal appeared in front of him, the archer, not expecting that, was forced to escape in order to avoid a fight.

Dragon kills Jerry Bertinelli

Dragon kills Jerry Bertinelli.

A few hours later, at the moment of the transaction with Bertinelli, with whom the criminals met at the port, Green Arrow also appeared, collaborating with the Bertinelli crime family, but the combined efforts of Vigilante, Black Siren, the Bratva and Diaz's army were enough to fend them off. Dragon then executed Bertenelli.[10]

After Sheck was killed and the cabal started to suspect Vincent Sobel for murdering him, Diaz was present at a meeting to discuss it. James sent Dragon and Anatoly to see that the bomb was moved and, after Sobel is exposed as a traitor of the cabal, he assisted Anatoly in torturing him, but they did not obtain any results and are later forced to flee as both branches of Team Arrow attacked their lair.[11]

Mr. Terrific and Wild Dog brought Diaz to James

Mr. Terrific and Wild Dog brought Diaz to Cayden James.

Later, Diaz and the rest of the cabal were thanked by James for their contributions to his plan as he intended to activate the bomb late in the evening, so he officially ended cooperation with his allies, promising to transport them away from the city and transfer money to their bank accounts. However, after noticing the promised vehicle did not show up, Dragon departed on his own in order to not to be there when the detonation of the bomb occurred and suggested his former partners to do the same. While leaving, however, he was captured by Wild Dog and Mister Terrific and brought to James, who obtained new evidence that that either Diaz, Black Siren and Anatoly killed his son. As James demanded the one who ordered the murder to come forward, Laurel confessed and started to insult the hacker in order to upset him. Knowing that she was lying, James slapped her, not realizing that the bomb activator interferes with the action of the collar blocking her powers, so she used her sonic scream in response, thus allowing herself and everyone else to escape. As he was leaving the building, Diaz was pursued by Spartan, but he managed to briefly overpower the vigilante before fleeing.[5]

Taking over Star City

Ricardo looks over Cayden's body

Diaz after killing Cayden James.

After Cayden James was arrested and went to the interrogation room at the SCPD headquarters, Diaz appeared to him saying that he'd used James to take over Star City explaining that "it's ripe for the taking" and that James was narrow-minded to think he was controlling him. He also stated James doesn't understand that things should be taken over and not destroyed while revealing he bribed the new police captain. He then murdered James while telling him that he was the one who had his son killed and calmly exited the building.[5]

Dragon has a meeting with Black Siren

Dragon has a meeting with Black Siren.

Afterward, Diaz explained all of his plan to Anatoly, who eagerly decided to cooperate with the gangster, while arranging a meeting with the Black Siren at his command. In the meanwhile, Dragon trained with new fighters who will power the ranks of his team. When he saw Laurel, he was very angry at her for having betrayed him and for trying to run away, but that he understood she was afraid of Dinah Drake, so Diaz reassured Laurel that he would be able to take care of her and started to talk about his plans, stating that she would like them.

Ricardo threatens Roy to testify or he would hurt Speedy

Diaz threatens Roy to testify against Oliver.

After the policemen on his payroll abducted Roy Harper, Dragon himself tortured him in order to force him to testify against Oliver in court regarding his identity as Green Arrow; Roy, however, was adamant and lasted until the arrival of Team Arrow, who successfully rescued their former member. Diaz fought Speedy and Green Arrow to a standstill, then reminded them that they're powerless against him and could not hand him over to the police because of the anti-vigilante act, which forced them to escape a moment before the arrival of Dragon's crooked police officers.[12]

Anatoly and Diaz sent a message to the police officers who are not under Diaz's payroll

Anatoly and Diaz "sent a message" to the police officers who are not on Diaz's payroll.

After Anatoly was arrested by a bunch of SCPD officers led by Lieutenant Dinah Drake while selling Vertigo for him, Diaz ordered District Attorney Sam Armand to have him released under the quibble that he was arrested without a warrant. Later that night, he waited for Officer Martin Hurst, one of the officers who did the arrest, next to his car and watched as Anatoly shot him out of revenge, stating that it would send a message to all of the officers who refuse to be under his payroll.

Dragon and Black Siren kiss

Laurel shares a kiss with Diaz.

The following night, Diaz visited Laurel at Quentin Lance's apartment and brought her a take-away dinner. Having seen she was studying her late counterpart's old schoolbooks, Diaz told her that she didn't have to do it as people like them "make the law" and that she don't need to change in order to "impress her old man" like he did when he was younger. Later, after former district attorney Sam Armand and former police captain Kimberly Hill accused mayor Oliver Queen of obstructing justice while he fired them both (actually because he discovered they were on Diaz's payroll), Laurel watched the news in Diaz's hideout alongside him. He complimented her for the idea and then showed the last champion of Vertigo after Team Arrow's raid to the core of his drug operation, which led Laurel to kiss him.[1]

Oliver hallucinates about Diaz's stabbing him

Oliver hallucinates about Diaz's stabbing him.

After Oliver was drugged via Vertigo by Kullens, a councilman on Diaz's payroll, a few hours before his meeting with the Council regarding his probable impeachment due to the accusation of Armand and Hill, he briefly hallucinated about Diaz who, after having stabbed Raisa and put a dagger in Oliver's abdomen, asked himself why nobody of his previous enemies ever thought to just kill him straight, then adding there are more things he intended to break in him.

Dragon and Black Siren talk about their plans for Star City

Diaz talk with Laurel about their plans for Star City.

That night, at 10:13, Diaz entered the SCPD station as he does every night in order to pay his policemen when the Hood entered the building ready to fight him, but he is stopped by Felicity Smoak, who managed to talk him down. The following morning Black Siren reached Diaz at the station while his men were cleaning, asking him why he didn't just killed Oliver, Diaz replied that he "is more dangerous as a martyr than as Green Arrow" and that their next move would be to spread the word that Star City is now "open for business"[13]

Joining the Quadrant

Diaz and Laurel have a meeting with Cartier

Diaz and Laurel have a meeting with Cartier.

About a week later Diaz and Black Siren went to Blüdhaven in order to meet Eric Cartier, the son of an influential member of The Quadrant. Diaz proposed to Cartier to use Star City as a place to run the Quadrant's business in exchange of having a seat at the table of the organization. However, Cartier asked him to find Robert Baylor, an agent of his organization who was caught by the FBI, in order to show them if he can able to operate at their level. In less than a day Diaz found the man while discovering that he was working with the federals and, as Laurel had demonstrated to be skeptical about his excessive concessions to the Quadrant, he reminds her that once he has won a place in the organization, he will have an empire. After Diaz gave the information on Baylor to Cartier, however, he asked for both him and Black Siren to get him in order to interrogate him so they could find out what exactly did he tell the Justice Department. Hoping to get a meeting with Cartier, Sr., Diaz does as he was asked but, right after extracting him from the FBI's safehouse, both Diaz and Baylor were shot by one of Cartier's man.

Diaz tortures Cartier

Diaz tortures Cartier.

Having survived thanks to a bulletproof vest, Diaz went back to Cartier's nightclub and defeated all of his men alongside Black Siren, then, later on, tortured Cartier while telling him of his childhood at the orphanage and asking him why he tried to kill him. After Cartier revealed that he and his father never talked about him to the Quadrant because he was "a nobody" and that they wanted to take Star City from his hands, Diaz beat Cartier to a pulp and ordered Cartier to take him to the place where the Quadrant meetings are held. While they were driving to the place, Laurel asked Diaz if what happened with Jesse still tormented him and he responded that it does, because he was right and he was "a loser"; when she tried to cheer him up by saying he wasn't one anymore, he told her about how he named his fear "The Dragon" and how for years it was everything he had but if he managed to become a member of The Quadrant he would get enough power to ensure it would not be used by anyone against him. Laurel paragoned him to Zoom because of the hate they held inside them.

Diaz becomes a member of The Quadrant

Diaz becomes a member of The Quadrant.

When they arrived at the Quadrant's headquarters, Villa Centanni, Diaz and Laurel broke inside using Cartier as a human bomb and slaughtered dozens of their men with both their bare hands and several gunshots while making their way to the hall where the four leaders of the Quadrant met. Once again Diaz proposed to gave them Star City in exchange for a place in the organization and, as one of the members declared there are no free chairs at their table and Remy Cartier called him a "street suck" and a "loser", Diaz shot him in the head, thus ensuring him a free chair and getting him welcomed into the Quadrant.

Diaz set Jesse on fire

Diaz set Jesse on fire.

That night, Diaz went to Jesse's house and kidnapped him, bringing him on a rooftop over his city and, after having shown him the last fragment of his father's picture he had kept for over thirty-two years while ignoring Laurel's pleas not to do it, cruelly set him on fire while stating that he "is not a loser anymore".[2]

Quentin and Laurel has a lunch with The Dragon

Quentin and Laurel at a lunch with Dragon.

After that, Laurel began to avoid meeting Diaz, until he summoned her personally while a tailor was making him a custom suit, in order to announce to her that the new mayor, Quentin, needed to be persuaded in respecting some "ground rules", and that she needed to set a meeting between them. Though reticent, Laurel did as ordered and took Quentin to their favorite Chinese restaurant, confessing that she was sorry as Diaz entered revealing the relationship between them and telling him to sign a few documents to privately sell some municipal property.

Oliver holds Diaz in a headlock

Oliver holds Diaz in a headlock.

After returning to his hiding place, it turned out that Anatoly brought Oliver Queen to him. The criminal began to kick the shod vigilante, mocking him, until Anatoly reminded to him that "every drop of blood he draws from a chained-up man is a sign of weakness, his weakness", which drove him to challenge him in a duel setting the rule that if he would win, Oliver would have left the city forever, and vice versa if Oliver would have be the winner. Thus, they went on to fight, during which Oliver ultimately managed to overpower Diaz and began to holding the enemy in a headlock, ordering him to give up. Unexpectedly, the crime lord pulled out a knife and pierced the side of his opponent's belly, winning in a dishonest fight and stating that "life isn't fair". Then Diaz ordered Anatoly to lock Oliver in his cell. A few hours later Laurel arrived to Dias, who handed him the signed papers, but it turned out that these were not necessary for him and he took them away as he only wanted to know if he could manipulate Quentin. Immediately after, Diaz ordered his men to brought out the beaten Oliver from his cell and has him arrested by revoking his parole and anticipating his trial at the following week, on May 3.[8]

Diaz threatens Laurel

Diaz threatens Laurel.

As Oliver's trial began, Diaz summoned Laurel to him. He was disappointed that during a short interview with Bethany Snow she didn't tell the truth about who was hidden under Green Arrow's mask. Looking at the behavior of the woman for several weeks, Diaz saw that she could play on two fronts so, unexpectedly, he choked Laurel, threatening her and saying that he expected her cooperation and a solid testimony in court. Later, when Rene Ramirez testified, Diaz invaded the court taking his daughter with him and forcing him to prosecute Oliver. The crime lord's plan, however, didn't go as expected since Christopher Chance/Human Target broke into the courtroom disguised as Tommy Merlyn revealing he's the Green Arrow before escaping, while Laurel choose to testify that Tommy is the vigilante, betraying Diaz and leading the trial to acquit the accused. Therefore, that night, at the docks, after Diaz ordered his men to bring him judge McGarvey and killed him for incompetence, Laurel appeared and confronted him at first managing to overpower the crime lord and his men but ultimately being subdued as Diaz used a power-dampening device to suppress her sonic scream, before to taking her captive telling her that his next plan would have been to kill Oliver and everyone he knows.[14]

Taking control of the Quadrant

Diaz talks with Cassamento

Diaz talks with Cassamento.

Diaz ordered to kill all of Star City's vigilantes, but his men failed. This caused a quarrel between him and Lydia Cassamento, who did not like Diaz's unplanned action. When the woman left the crime lord's office, Anatoly suggested moving him to a safer place where it would be easier to defend. However, the vigilantes attacked his truck during the transportation and, as his men fought, Diaz tried to escape. However, he was caught up by Mister Terrific, who as a result of the anger associated with Diaz hurting his boyfriend, began to beat him. The crime lord quickly took control and stabbed him in the stomach, but, before he managed to finish him off, seeing Green Arrow approaching him, he gave up the murder, grabbed the portable disk that fell out of his hand and fled to the SCPD station. There, he ordered the computer engineer to check the completeness of the data on the pendrive, then he began to strangle Anatoly, accusing him of betrayal. The Russian, however, turned the suspicion away from him directing it to Cassamento. A moment later, Lyla Michaels, he director of A.R.G.U.S., who had actually stolen data from Dragon, came to the station and, as the crime lord realized it, he tried to kill her. The appearance of the vigilantes, however, prevented him from doing it. In retaliation to this, he murdered Cassamento and decided to attack the Outsider's hideout.

Diaz new leader of The Quadrant

Diaz becomes leader of The Quadrant.

Dragon filled the hiding place with gas and he entered the spot himself, wearing a mask, there he had the chance to kill Oliver but, before he could, he was wounded by a bomb hidden in the stairwell. Despite his wounds, Diaz managed to escape and, later, met with Cyrus Broderick and Dragos Ibanescu, killing the latter for not wanting to cooperate and becoming the Quadrant's leader.[15]

Downfall

Diaz threatens Lance

Diaz threatens Lance.

When Oliver, along with the help of the now fully reestablished Team Arrow and the FBI took over the police, Diaz escaped, and later met with Anatoly, whom he suspected of treason. He gave him the false coordinates of an hiding place, realizing that the Russian would give the information to Oliver. Soon after, he called mayor Lance, whom he ordered to remove the federal from Star City, threatening to murder Laurel; the man did not agree, which upset the crime lord. At the same time Team Arrow and the FBI moved on Diaz's supposed new hideout only to fall right into his trap. As part of the team entered the warehouse, they found out that it had been mined. If they tried to move, they would risk a building explosion. Ricardo fired remotely, but Overwatch's intervention helped heroes avoid death. Immediately after that, Dragon contacted again the mayor, whom agreed to meet him. When Quentin showed up, he revealed that the feds could target Diaz, forcing the man to take him with him to Laurel's hideout. The heroes immediately began tracking Lance's pacemaker in order to find Diaz's new headquarter.

Green Arrow fights Dragon

Green Arrow fights Dragon.

Bringing Lance to Laurel, Diaz threatened to shoot her unless Lance ordered the FBI to leave Star City, but still the man did not intend to obey him, this upset Diaz, who fired his gun at Laurel, only for Lance to take the shot at her place. Before the crime lord can give him another shot, the vigilantes burst into his hideout. Diaz escaped to the roof, where he expected transport, there, however, he was cornered by the Green Arrow and the two engage in a brutal fight in which Oliver is the victorious. Then Laurel unexpectedly appeared, who with a sonic scream threw Dragon out of the building's roof and into the water.

Diaz plotting his revenge

Diaz plotting his revenge.

Diaz was eventually able to survive, unlike Quentin, who died in the hospital, however, his criminal organization began to fall, because Team Arrow during the fight had took a list of his wages, removing corrupt policemen, judges and officiers from Star City. The price for cooperation with the FBI, however, was Oliver's freedom, who confessed publicly to being Green Arrow and was sentenced to a life in prison. The whole transmission was watched on television by a wounded and angry Diaz who was already plotted his revenge.[16]

Personality

"Fighting for trophies is a lot different than fighting for your life "
—Ricardo Diaz[src]

Ricardo Diaz has a very shallow and callous, as well as violent, and even psychopathic personality. Growing up in an abusive orphanage, he took all of his fear and anger and compartmentalized it, creating a boogeyman he dubbed 'The Dragon'. Now an adult and ruthless crime lord, he has taken to calling himself 'The Dragon', taking the emotions he shut away and channeling them to effectively take over Star City.[2] He exhibits many, if not all, classic psychopathic traits: a complete lack of conscience, a lack of remorse and empathy, a shallow affect, and even callousness as he showed no qualms for murdering Cayden James's son, Owen Post and Cayden James himself.[5]

Diaz is an incredible liar and manipulator and was able to fool James and his criminal cabal for months. Cruel and often silent, Diaz hid behind the mask of a brainless thug well so his allies and enemies never suspected him, only quietly moving machinations to suit his advantage and striking out when was necessary. Despite his patient, intelligent attitude, Diaz was also smug and enjoyed to taunt his enemies such as revealing everything to James before killing him.[5] He is also virtually fearless in the face of death and danger. Diaz is distinctly sadistic, as he was willing to torture Vincent Sobel [17], and asked Anatoly Knyazev why he didn't torture Martin Hurst before killing him. His well-known cruelty is also incredibly feared, as a woman killed her boyfriend or husband because of her loyalty to Diaz.[18]

He has a sort of contorted warrior-like sense of honor and life philosophy, stating that "fighting for trophies is different than fighting for life" and respecting everyone who managed to fight with him, granting them money and places in his organization depending on the skills they demonstrated. Also, Diaz seems to highly regard the concept of "family", as seen by his viewing his organization as such and becoming greatly angered whenever someone goes "against the family".[12]

Moreover, Diaz is always irreproachably calm and speaks with seemingly no emotion behind his words, to the point of almost never rising his tone. However, in stark contrast with all of this, he is an immensely violent individual, to the point of going as far as to lashing out in anger by punching the glass of a mirror and slaughtering his enemies so vehemently, he even forced Black Siren to look away. He knows no mercy, having held a grudge to Jesse Federico, his childhood bully, for at least thirty-two years before killing him.[2] According to Laurel, Diaz doesn't feel anger inside as he "is not even human inside".[8]

Diaz is a classic thug who lacks honor. He pointlessly hurt Oliver Queen while chained up, proving to his men what a coward he is, when Anatoly told him that every drop of blood he draws from a chained-up man is a sign of weakness, Diaz's weakness. Also, he is not a fair player as he strongly believes that "life isn't fair", perhaps using his own past tragedy as an excuse of his life-forged mantra to win no matter what including cheating; Diaz profoundly despises Oliver stating that while the latter only spent five years in hell, he was born in it.[8]

After his plan to put Oliver in jail failed, he became more unstable and paranoid as he began open warfare on Oliver and his loved ones even though this shows the whole city how much control he has on it. He also killed Lydia Cassamento, a member of The Quadrant under the suspicion that she was a spy for Team Arrow even though he had no proof.[2] He also doesn't take failure or treachery very well as he killed judge C. McGarvey, who presided over the trial of Oliver, even though he tried to convince Diaz that it was another man who freed Oliver.[14] Also after figuring out that Anatoly was the spy, he told him that his death was gonna be a slow and painful one.[16]

Abilities

  • Peak of human physical condition: Diaz is in top physical condition which he maintains through extensive training. He has fast reflexes and is strong enough to swiftly incapacitate a much larger foe with ease as well as push grown men through a door. His durability left him unfazed after being shot by a machine gun at close range (despite wearing a bulletproof vest) and endure blows from other foes. He was blown back by a near by explosive and walked away without serious injuries. His conditioning also lets him recover from most injuries very quickly, though not super-humanly.[12]
    • Acrobatics/Free-running: Diaz has great free-running skills and could drop from a height of several feet without injuring herself. He is capable of scaling buildings, and running from rooftop to rooftop with ease as well to fluidly dodge and attack from different directions without losing balance.[16]
    • Honed senses: Diaz has sharp hearing and sight, as well as keen skills of perception. He is able to pick up an incoming danger and react extremely quickly.[12] Diaz was able to hear several guards sneaking up behind him and could determine exactly where they were standing and how many of them there were.[2]
  • High-level intellect/Master tactician/Manipulator/Leader: As a crime lord, Diaz is able to manufacture drugs all while remaining off charts and covering up his tracks.[3] Diaz also created a highly sophisticated plan to take over Star City starting by having a doctored video of Karl Iscove to make it seem like Green Arrow was the one that killed Owen Post as well as leak a doctored picture of Oliver Queen as Green Arrow to the public and the FBI.[5] Although he was a part of Cayden James's criminal cabal, Diaz was only there to use Cayden James as a means for him to take over Star City, by letting James "thin the herd" for him, making it easier for him to take over.[5] Diaz was able to manipulate James, predict every move he made and use it to his advantage such as being able to find out Team Arrow's identities and use them against James. He was even able to find out that Roy Harper's death was faked and managed to track him down. Diaz is also always fully prepared for situations that would put him in a disadvantage like when he wore a bulletproof vest in case Eric Cartier tried to have him killed which he almost did.
    • Master of deception: Diaz is an exceptional liar; he was able to fool Cayden James for months, as well as the other members of the cabal, including Anatoly Knyazev and Laurel Lance, who is a master of deception in her own right.[12] When he found out Anatoly had betrayed him, he pretended not to know and used it to his advantage in order to lead Team Arrow and the FBI into a trap.[19]
    • Expert interrogator/Torturer: Diaz is an effective interrogator and torturer. He is capable of inflicting a lot of physical pain into a target without killing them and is even capable of using mind games to worsen the discomfort.[12]
    • Explosives expert: Diaz is highly skilled in planting and detonating explosives.
    • Multilingual: Being of Spanish descendant, Diaz speaks that language fluently, in addition to English and Russian.[12]
  • Master combatant/Martial artist: Diaz is shown to be a mastercombatant displaying a huge amount of skill as he outmatched Thea Queen and was able to briefly overpower John Diggle who is a master combatant himself. However, he was swiftly subdued by Wild Dog and Mr. Terrific though this could be that he intended to be captured to stop Cayden James from blowing up Star City as he wanted to take it over.[5] Diaz was also able to fight evenly against Oliver Queen for a while before being put in a headlock which made him resort to use a knife.[20] In their second confrontation, Diaz once again fought evenly with Oliver for some time before being overpowered.[21]
    • Expert marksman: As a crime lord, Diaz is an expert in the use of many types of firearms. He was able to systematically take out a team of FBI agents in a firefight.
    • Expert knife wielder: Diaz is skilled in the use of knives as he carries one with him and has used one to kill Cayden James. He threw one at Thea Queen with pin-point accuracy.[5][12]
  • Intimidation: Diaz is deeply feared by most people because of what he is capable of and his associates would rather die than betray him.[1] Even a meta-human as powerful as Laurel Lance was (initially) afraid of him, but she later overcame her fear of Diaz.[2][8]
  • Indomitable will/High tolerance for pain: Diaz is a very driven and determined individual, as well as virtually fearless in the face of death and danger and has a considerable tolerance for pain, being able to pull an arrow out of his leg and keep fighting Thea Queen.[12][16]
  • Stealth/Infiltration: Diaz is very elusive. He can sneak in and out of most guarded buildings without being detected and quickly disappear from sight even in broad daylight.[1]
  • Network: As the leader of a huge criminal organization, Diaz has established many connections who provides him aid for various natures, having on his payroll numerous politicians, judges, and policemen both in the city and in the country, making him one of, if not the most dangerous crime lord Team Arrow and New Team Arrow have ever faced.[5] Even after his entire influence over Star City was destroyed, he still had a few resources and allies such as the Longbow Hunters to help him go into hiding.[16]

Weaknesses

  • Mental instability: Although his savagery has made him feared by both his allies and most of his enemies, it has also proven to be Diaz's greatest weakness; as he has become increasingly arrogant, erratic, cruel, unstable and delusional, evidenced by the fact he tried to eliminate Team Arrow and the Outsiders respectively (after his failed attempt to send Oliver Queen to jail) but he also underestimating their capabilities, even Anatoly Knyazev turned against Diaz; after realizing that the latter is nothing more than a psychopath who lacks any honor and who will destroy Star City if he gains full control over it. In the end, his arrogance and ego led to his downfall; as Oliver Queen/Green Arrow turned himself over to the FBI in exchange for their help in taking down Diaz, his criminal empire began falling, his entire influence over Star City was destroyed and he was forced into hiding.

Equipment

  • Guns/Firearms: Diaz primarily makes use of a pistol, wielding it quite effectively. He also is proficient in using sub-machine guns, assault rifles, sniper rifles, and grenade launchers. He kept a Glock holstered under his jacket to use it in case of emergencies.
  • Knives: Diaz carries knives with him and plays with them in a manner to calm his nerves. He has been known to carry Bowie knives, combat knives, throwing knives, and switchblades. He also used one to kill Cayden James.[5][12]
  • Metal link chain: Diaz has used a metal link chain to battle John Diggle.[5]
  • Smoke grenade: Diaz used a smoke grenade to escape Team Arrow when stealing a military grade 3D printer.[3]
  • Bulletproof vest: Diaz wore a bulletproof vest during an assassination attempt on his life by Eric Cartier.[2]
  • Sonic dampening device: Diaz used this device to neutralize Laurel Lance's sonic scream, when she tried to kill him.
  • Gas mask: Diaz wore a gas mask when attacking the Helix bunker.[15]

Appearances

Arrow


Trivia

  • Diaz sports tattoos of dragons around both sides his neck, his left shoulder[12] and his back[16] a reference to the look of his comic book counterpart, Richard Dragon, after The New 52.
  • The first time Team Arrow encounters him his face is hidden in the shadow and he throws a smoke bomb. This seems to symbolize his current place hidden in the background and creating confusion while manipulating events.
  • Diaz seem to genuinely care for good eating habits and alimentation in general, scolding Officer Martin Hurst for eating junk food and bringing dinner to Black Siren.[1]
    • As Diaz himself subsequently revealed, he suffered hunger as a kid and was often forced to fight for getting a meal.[2]
  • Diaz choosing the name "Dragon" for his internal hatred and fear, and later for himself, as well as his tendency to set things and people on fire, could have been caused by the tortures inflicted to him by Jesse Federico, who burned his forearms and attempted to destroy the only picture he had of his late father forcing him to reach into the flames of the burning bucket to get it back, resulting in extreme burns and blisters that made his arm scaled (like a dragon's skin) for weeks.[2]
  • Ricardo has similarities to the late villains Malcolm Merlyn, Ra's al Ghul, Damien Darhk, Adrian Chase, and the still living former villain Slade Wilson (who was under the influence of the Mirakuru at the time);
    • Like Malcolm, he is intelligent and calculating.
    • Like Ra's, he commands an army of people who are absolutely loyal to him, who would die before betraying him. He also has allied with the Longbow Hunters, a group of the world's deadliest warriors that the League of Assassins feared. This trait is the same as Ra's being the leader of the League of Assassins, who are also a group of the world's deadliest warriors feared everywhere.
    • Like Damien, he controls a large criminal empire (such as Damien's H.I.V.E.) with reaches beyond a city through taking control of the Quadrant.
    • Like Adrian, Diaz is mentally unstable and considered a psychopath by even other criminals such as Anatoly Knyazev.
    • Like Slade, he is extremely arrogant and overconfident to the point of underestimating his opponents, like he did with Oliver; as he believed that he had defeated the latter.
  • Ricardo Diaz is the first main antagonist in the Arrowverse not to have been defeated in the season that they appeared in with Diaz returning as the antagonist for Season 7 along with the Longbow Hunters.

Behind the scenes

References