The UFC has made a big play to keep one of their superstars for a little while longer.
Stockton slugger Nate Diaz was headed into his last fight of his UFC contract after losing to Leon Edwards at UFC 263. Ever since he lost that scrap, the question on everybody’s mind is: what is next for the younger Diaz brother?
Looking For A Fight
Diaz had Vicente Luque and Tony Ferguson on his radar for a while. However, the UFC wouldn’t put those fights together for whatever reason. Diaz also had December as a month he’d like to fight in, but unfortunately it didn’t come to be.
One name the UFC brass offered Diaz was no other than Khamzat Chimaev. ‘Borz’ has been making waves inside the Octagon, brutally beating on everybody the UFC puts in front of him. Now 4-0 inside the UFC, the promotion is trying to put him against household names. Diaz declined the fight in an instant, citing disrespect.
The UFC Extends His Contract
With the UFC unable to make anything for Diaz in late 2021, they threw a curveball. Instead of getting Diaz’s last fight over with, they would extend his UFC contract to have more fights. This would be first reported by Ariel Helwani on Substack.
“Sounds like the UFC is moving on from Khamzat Chimaev vs. Nathan Diaz fight.” Helwani wrote. “As a result, [they] have extended Diaz’s contract. I think they knew that would happen and were hoping to buy time for when Conor McGregor is ready to return later this year.”
Helwani’s theory could prove to be correct. Diaz’s rival, Conor McGregor is targeted to return in mid-2022. With the UFC buying some time, the move could be effective in finally making the trilogy.
Diaz Has Yet To Sign
The ball is still in Diaz’s court. The fighter does have more fights on contract, with the same price tag attached to all of them, so we’ll have to see where Diaz goes forward with this.
“Diaz hasn’t signed any new deal yet, so that, too, is a fascinating story to watch next year.”
We’ll see how the story unfolds soon.