Kamaru Usman On Nate Diaz Calling Out UFC’s Leon Edwards: ‘He’s Not A World Class Fighter’

Diaz suggested a UFC title rematch with Edwards following his win in boxing; Usman disapproves.

Nate Leon Ufc 263
(via @combatalk - Instagram)

Kamaru Usman doesn’t think Nate Diaz should get the best fighters off the bat ahead of what could be a second run for him in the UFC.

The Stockton superstar has fought in the UFC for more than a decade, winning a contract on ‘The Ultimate Fighter’ in 2007 to finally being granted his release with a win over Tony Ferguson in his final appearance at UFC 279. Diaz, 39, has been staying busy outside the Octagon, boxing Jake Paul and former foe Jorge Masvidal most recently, defeating the first-ever BMF Champion by majority decision last weekend.

Diaz is open to sticking around the sport of boxing but has thrown his name in the hat to fight UFC Welterweight Champion Leon Edwards in a rematch of their iconic meeting at UFC 263 in 2021, which saw Diaz rock Edwards bad in the fifth round after being dominated in every round prior. While it’s unlikely to happen, seeing as though Diaz is currently a free agent, Henry Cejudo says Edwards vs. Diaz II could very well be a possibility as it’d do big business for the UFC – an “entertainment company” in his own words.

Usman Says Talk Of Diaz Fighting High-Level Competition In UFC Is ‘Absurd And Crazy’

In contrast, fellow former champ Kamaru Usman argues that Diaz shouldn’t even be in discussion to face the best the welterweight division has to offer as Diaz hasn’t won against a ranked contender since Anthony Pettis in 2019.

“Nate Diaz is on [the] tail end of his career,” Usman said on ‘Pound 4 Pound‘ on the topic of a potential title shot for Diaz against Edwards. “Yes, of course, he’s done, made a great name for himself and big shout out to Nate Diaz for still having that notoriety to be able to go out there and still get paychecks like this because he’s getting these good fights on the outside. But come on, to say Nate Diaz is gonna come back in and and walk into fighting world-class mixed martial arts fighters right now in the UFC. Come on. That’s absurd and crazy.”

 

Usman Brutally Honest On Diaz

Throughout a 27-fight career in the UFC, Diaz fought the likes of former champions Conor McGregor, Rafael Dos Anjos and Benson Henderson in his heyday and while the fan-favorite never won a world title, there was no doubting he was pitted against world-class competition for many years.

However, Usman doesn’t see Diaz as the fighter he was once was, especially now with time away from the UFC Octagon.

“He was a [world class fighter],” Usman said of Diaz. “And don’t get me wrong, shout out to Nate Diaz. Nate Diaz is still, you know, he could still fight, but he’s not a world class fighter.

“Are you crazy?” Usman said, after Cejudo called Diaz still ‘dangerous’. “Throw Nate Diaz in there with Shavkat Rakhmonov. Throw Nate Diaz in there with myself. Throw Nate Diaz in there with JDM [Jack Della Maddalena]. Throw Diaz in there with Justin Gaethje… come on.”

There’s a quite a few names in the stacked welterweight division that have championship potential and none of which would fall to a Nate Diaz nearing his forties, as Kamaru Usman insinuates here.

Is Nate Diaz still a world-class fighter today or did the Stockton slugger fall from those ranks in the past few years?

Published on July 8, 2024 at 3:31 pm
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