It’s no secret that Nick and Nate Diaz have been difficult to negotiate with in the past, but the Stockton brothers usually get what they want.
Younger brother Nate Diaz hasn’t fought since his decision loss to Conor McGregor at UFC 202, which was almost two years ago, and the 32-year-old is getting ‘sick of sitting around’ on the sidelines.
Diaz, a former lightweight title challenger, expressed interest in filling in for the injured Max Holloway at UFC 222, but head promoter Dana White says the fan favorite refuses to accept any fights.
Speaking to Lance Pugmire of the LA Times via text message, White sent the rolled eyes emoji when asked if Diaz was being considered as a candidate for UFC 222, stating that he has turned down five or six fights against top lightweight contenders in the last six months.
“He [Diaz] doesn’t want to fight,” White said ”We have made around five or six fights in the last six months and he has turned them all down. Alvarez, [Justin] Gaethje, [Edson] Barboza and [interim lightweight champion Tony] Ferguson multiple times.”
Diaz is probably trying to lure McGregor back into the Octagon for a trilogy bout, as their back-to-back welterweight scraps at UFC 196 and UFC 202 were two of the highest-grossing pay-per-view events in the promotion’s history.
McGregor, the current lightweight champion, teased of a rematch with Diaz after his boxing extravaganza with Floyd Mayweather Jr. but it’s highly unlikely to take place at UFC 222, which is scheduled for March 3 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The original main event between reigning featherweight champ Holloway and Frankie Edgar was scrapped after ‘Blessed’ pulled out due to injury.
Diaz, who competes in both the lightweight and welterweight divisions, could also be angling for a 170-pound title fight against Tyron Woodley, but ‘T-Wood’ is currently nursing a shoulder injury suffered from his most recent title defense against Demian Maia at UFC 214.
Given White’s difficulty negotiating with Diaz, it’s more likely that the UFC will book a bout between Frankie Edgar and top-three contender Brian Ortega as the new UFC 222 main event.