The Younger Diaz Brother is Coming Back! Nate Diaz Has Agreed Verbally to Fight Anthony ‘Showtime’ Pettis…
It’s been almost three years since Nate Diaz has last fought. One of the most volatile personalities on the roster, he’s had a tense relationship with the management at the UFC, because he’s basically felt undervalued by the promotion. After dancing the dance with Conor McGregor twice, you could say they’ve missed an opportunity with the former lightweight.
We say former lightweight because it looks like he’s going to step back into the welterweight division to take on a former UFC champion in Anthony ‘Showtime’ Pettis. Yes, that’s right, after months of negotiations with the UFC, Diaz has finally agreed on a verbal deal with the organization.
Yesterday, the news emerged that he had submitted his first drug test sample of the year. It’s all moved very quickly since then and it looks like we’ll get to see the younger Diaz brother back in action.
Despite not having fought since UFC 202 in August 2016, Diaz has remained in the headlines. He was pushing for the trilogy fight with Conor McGregor, but the Irishman ended up dragging Floyd Mayweather out of bed instead. Since then he’s been concentrating on the marijuana industry. The birth of his first child in June 2018 may have influenced his decision to get back in the cage again.
Last week he showed discontent with the UFC. He’s openly flirted with Bellator in the past and after the Canelo Alvarez v Daniel Jacobs middleweight title fight last week, he posted on Instagram:
“I should be boxing these guys. I’m stuck in a cage though.”
Something seems to have changed dramatically in the last few days though. Diaz has verbally agreed to take on Anthony Pettis for UFC 241 on August 1, in Anaheim, California. Daniel Cormier will defend his heavyweight crown against Stipe Miocic in the main event.
Diaz has fought five times at welterweight, with three losses. Now though, at the age of 34, he’s clearly looking to cash in before it’s too late. At least he hasn’t taken a lot of damage in the last few years. Meanwhile, Anthony Pettis made his 170lb debut against Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson earlier in the year, landing a sensational knockout punch off of the cage. This should be a very entertaining scrap on paper. Let’s hope it becomes more than a verbal agreement.
Diaz is known to be very difficult to negotiate. He had agreed to a deal to fight Dustin Poirier last August. However, ‘The Diamond’ withdrew injured and Diaz walked away. Now Poirier is the interim lightweight champion. Those are the breaks in MMA.
After the news broke that Donald Cerrone will step up to fight Tony Ferguson in the summer, many speculated that Diaz was going to welcome Conor McGregor back to the octagon. It seems like the UFC might finally be moving past the Irishman as they move forward into the ESPN era. That is no bad thing.