While Nate Diaz was selected as Rafael dos Anjos' replacement at UFC 196, Conor McGregor was interested in locking horns with his older brother.
"The Notorious" spoke to FOX Sports Live on Wednesday and said he was enquiring about Nick's suspension (h/t David St. Martin of MMA Fighting).
"I certainly did ask when Nick's ban is up," said McGregor. "He's still banned so either is good for me. Maybe somewhere down the line I'll probably contest against both, I feel."
Diaz was initially suspended for 5 years following a failed drug test for marijuana metabolites at UFC 183. The former Strikeforce welterweight champion passed two WADA-accredited tests but failed one conducted by Quest Diagnostics. The controversy surrounding the issue forced the Nevada Athletic Commission to reassess their punishment and reduce Diaz' suspension to 18-months (retroactive Jan 31. 2015). The 32-year-old could return to competition as early as August.
His younger brother, Nate, went to war with McGregor at the UFC 196 press conference yesterday and will look to settle things in the Octagon on March 5th. Nick was in attendance and, according to McGregor, looked notably uncomfortable in the audience.
"Nick is proud of his little brother," said McGregor. "I could see it up there. He was worried for him or something. I could see it. I had to tell him, 'Nick, he's doing well up here. Relax.' But that's his baby brother so it is what it is."
Fight Hub questioned Diaz shortly after the conference and the two-time UFC title challenger said he's more than willing to square off with the Irishman.
"I'm f**king ready to go, bro," Diaz said. "I'm ready to go today. They said 170 [pounds], what the f**k?"
Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz will headline the UFC 196 pay-per-view in a welterweight non-title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on March 5th.