Two former UFC lightweight champions were dubbed to fight at UFC 244, that was until Anthony Pettis accepted to fight Nate Diaz at UFC 241.
Pettis revealed at the open workouts for his fight this weekend against Diaz that originally, he was ready to fight Conor McGregor at Madison Square Garden in November, but plans for that fight were scrapped.
“First it was McGregor and I was like let’s do it in Madison Square Garden,” Pettis revealed on Wednesday. “Something fell off with that and then it popped up Nate and I was just like we’ll see what happens. (Transcription via MMA Fighting)
“Then he signed the contract and we’re here.”
When asked if a fight in the future would interest him, “Showtime” said it didn’t matter as his fight with Diaz this Saturday is on the forefront of his mind. The matchup with the UFC vet and fan favorite Diaz excites Pettis due to the Stockton native’s scrappy style.
“It doesn’t really matter. I’m fighting the best in the world,” Pettis said. “Nate’s one of the guys. He’s definitely a tough dude. Even though me and Nate have our problems, I respect his game.
“He’s a fan favorite fighter. He’s going to come and try to fight me. He’s not going to try holding me down for 15 minutes looking to sneak over a decision so I respect that about him.”
UFC 241 takes place this Saturday night, August 17th, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California. A heavyweight title fight and rematch between Daniel Cormier and Stipe Miocic will headline the card, whilst Pettis vs. Diaz will serve as the co-main event.