Another day, another fiasco surrounding Stockton's very own Nate Diaz and the UFC. On Saturday Khamzat Chimaev will come up against Nate Diaz and this will perhaps be the final time we see 209 inside the octagon.
Even though Diaz is already more than a 7-to-1 underdog at the majority of sportsbooks, he made it clear in an interview with ESPN on Tuesday that he didn't even want the fight with Chimaev.
He said frustratingly “What they’ve got me doing right now is they’re acting like I called for this fight, which I didn’t call for, and I don’t want, and didn’t want, and still don’t want,” Diaz said. “But I don’t give a f***I'll fight anybody. But the pressure’s on him — he better finish me, because he’s the next killer in town.
“Because ... if I whoop his ass, they’re going to say, ‘Oh, he wasn’t the best in town.’ But they’re not going to let me go [otherwise]. I asked for 20 fights, 10 fights, 15 fights.”
Diaz has consistently complained that UFC president Dana White and his team have thwarted his attempts to fulfill the remaining terms of his UFC contract. As Chimaev advances toward a title opportunity, one theory going into the bout is that UFC is throwing Diaz to the wolves here. Diaz is one among those who thinks upper management at the UFC has that goal in mind. The native of Stockton claims that he thinks the UFC is trying to help Chimaev succeed at Diaz's expense.
Since his June 2021 decision defeat to Leon Edwards, who is now the UFC welterweight champion, Diaz has undoubtedly not been timid when making callouts.
Over the course of the past year, Diaz publicly and repeatedly requested fights with action fighters Vicente Luque and Dustin Poirier, among others; Luque and Poirier both responded to Diaz's requests. In Particular, the Poirier match received a lot of fan support.
Since his defeat against Leon Edwards in June 2021, Diaz has not competed in any professional fights. Diaz has lost to Leon Edwards, Jorge Masvidal, and Conor McGregor in three of his previous four fights. After a three-year hiatus, his most recent victory came in 2019 against Anthony Pettis.
Chimaev, on the other hand, has started his career by winning 11 straight matches. He has four finishes inside the Octagon after defeating Li, John Phillips, Rhys McKee, Gerald Meerschaert, and Gilbert Burns.