Could a Nick Diaz return be bigger than UFC 196?


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Thursday May 26, 2016 Nick Diaz is one of the UFC’s most prized assets, he’s real, he’s tough, he’s a fighter’s fighter, and he’s so damn fun to watch! With wins over the likes of Robbie Lawler, BJ Penn and many more top fighters, there is no doubt that Diaz (26-10, 1NC) would slot right into the top 10 rankings of the UFC welterweight division. Nick and his brother Nate Diaz (20-10-0), have a huge following in California and across the United States due to their straight talking attitudes and exciting fighting style. I suggest anyone who is a fan of Nick Diaz to listen to Joe Rogan talk about Nick on one of his podcast shows, look it up on YouTube (The Joe Rogan Experience), it’s exceptionally inspirational, although you will find yourself clicking on more and more epic Diaz videos in the recommended videos list, and watching video after video until you realise it is light outside and you haven’t slept… so enter with caution!

It is common knowledge in the MMA world that Nick and younger brother Nate have a great, respectful relationship, in fact Nick is responsible for introducing Nate to the fight game in the first place. But is it now Nick who may find himself indebted to his younger brother? Nates show stopping performance at UFC 196 propelled both brothers right back into the limelight, and firmly introduced the Stockton natives to the newer MMA fans, otherwise known as ‘McGregor fans’. On the surface of it all UFC 196 belonged to Nate Diaz… although, It almost feels like the aftermath of UFC 196 has left many MMA fans desperate to see Nick Diaz step back into the octagon. The epic press conferences between Nate and McGregor (19-3-0) only left me and what I can imagine the rest of you Diaz fans desperate to see Nick back on that stage and in that cage where he belongs.

Diaz told MMA Mayhem TV that he is only willing to accept big fights, so we should be in for a treat! But who? Diaz’s last four fights have all been Huge draws and have all been epic fights in their own right, but he has only left the cage victorious in one of his last four outings. His last victory was a dominating performance over veteran and two weight UFC champion BJ Penn (16-10-2). Diaz hasn’t had much luck in recent years, with his losses to Condit and GSP and his loss to Anderson Silva (33-7-0, 1NC), which was later overturned to a no contest as both men failed a post-fight drug test. After failing a drug test due to testing positive for high levels of cannabis metabolites for the third time, Diaz was subsequently banned for five years, which was later over turned to 18 months due to the constant pressure and petitioning from his dedicated fans. Diaz’s ban will be up in August of this year.

We already know that the two Stockton born brothers are such huge draws independently of each other and we want to see them both get back into the cage as soon as possible, but how can the UFC not dedicate UFC 209 to Nick and Nate Diaz? Its fate, it makes sense! I think the guys at the UFC already know that this is the card to make! The question to ask is, who does Nick Diaz fight if and when he returns to the Octagon? England’s Michael Bisping (29-7-0) was making some noise for a fight with Diaz earlier this year, but now that Bisping is fighting Luke Rockhold (15-2-0) for the Middleweight belt at UFC 199, that fight is almost certainly out the window.

Potential Nick Diaz return fights:

Georges St-Pierre (25-2-0)

Often regarded as one of the best of all time. GSP beat Nick Diaz via unanimous decision in March 2013. This fight was building for a while and both fighters took a very real dislike to one another. I suggest you go and watch some of the press conferences leading up to this fight, things got heated! There is still some bad blood here, Nick thought he won the fight, and I’m sure fans would love to see this one again! GSP is still technically semi-retired so getting this one signed may be challenging!

Robbie Lawler (26-10-0, 1NC)

Lawler is the current UFC welterweight Champion, and in my opinion he is the most exciting fighter in the UFC right now. If you haven’t seen any of Lawler’s fights, stop what you’re doing, set up a UFC fight pass account, and enjoy! Diaz is the only man to beat Robbie Lawler by TKO/KO in his whole career. Diaz taunted and trash talked Lawler throughout the fight before landing a vicious right hand in the mid-way point of the second round which saw Lawler unconscious before he even hit the mat. I’m sure Lawler would jump at the chance to avenge that loss that took place over a decade ago, and I’m sure Diaz wouldn’t shy away from a potential chance at UFC gold.

Carlos Condit (30-8-0)

Condit is another opponent who has fought Diaz in the past. Condit beat Diaz in 2012 via Unanimous decision, seeing Condit walk away with the UFC interim Welterweight Championship. Diaz was visibly upset after the fight, claiming that he won the fight. Condit is certainly another fan favourite and I’m sure we would all love to see a rematch between these two guys. Condit is always such an exciting fighter.

I think we’re all in agreement that any Nick Diaz fight is going to be an exciting one and will fetch huge numbers. I just hope the UFC approach Diaz with a big payday fight, an offer he can’t refuse! Let’s get a fight booked!

Make sure to catch UFC 199 – Rockhold vs. Bisping 2 on June 4th. Bisping will be facing Rockhold for the second time in his UFC career and will be looking to avenge his previous loss to the current middleweight champion. This is two guys at the peak of their careers and two exceptionally dangerous fighters who are looking to knock each other out. And in the co main event will be the ultimate grudge match between Uriah Faber and current Bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz. These guys genuinely hate each other and will be going out there to hurt each other. Both guys have beat each other once before, in fact Faber is responsible for the only loss on Cruz’s professional MMA record. If the Main event isn’t enough to convince you to tune in for this one, then this one definitely will! This card should have UFC fans going crazy, and if you’re not a UFC fan, then you certainly will be after June 4th!

By: Stephen Evans
@stephen_evans_
FightBookMMA.com


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