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Report: UFC has extended Nate Diaz’s contract even without signing new deal

It looks like Nate Diaz will be sticking around the UFC for a while.

Nate Diaz speaks to the media after his UFC 263 fight with Leon Edwards in June.
Nate Diaz speaks to the media after his UFC 263 fight with Leon Edwards in June.
Photo by Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The last time we checked, Nate Diaz was on the last fight of his UFC contract. Big boss Dana White himself confirmed it back in October, while also shutting down a potential matchup against Tony Ferguson for Diaz’s last fight.

But it looks like the younger Diaz brother will be sticking around for a while, at least according to MMA insider Ariel Helwani. In his recent Substack post, Helwani also stated that the UFC isn’t trying to put on a potential bout between Diaz and undefeated rising star Khamzat Chimaev anymore, but used it as an excuse to extend his contract.

“Sounds like the UFC is moving on from Khamzat Chimaev vs. Nathan Diaz fight and, as a result, 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 wrote (H/T MMA News).

“Diaz hasn’t signed any new deal yet, so that, too, is a fascinating story to watch next year.”

UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou also recently put the promotion on blast after they similarly “forced” to keep extending his contract. One of the alleged tactics revealed in the antitrust suit was the exploitation of tolling provisions by the UFC in order to coerce fighters into resigning with the promotion.

The 36-year-old Diaz (20-13) rose to further mainstream superstardom after his UFC 196 win over Conor McGregor in 2016. He’s currently on a two-fight losing streak after his UFC 263 defeat to Leon Edwards in June, but remains to be one of the more popular draws in the sport.