Dana White is glad the UFC 279 card got reshuffled at the last minute because he doesn’t think the main event would have ended well for Nate Diaz.
Diaz, now a free agent, ended up fighting Tony Ferguson after original opponent Khamzat Chimaev was demoted to the co-main event due to missing weight.
However had the fight gone ahead, White believes the outcome ‘wouldn’t have been good’ for Diaz, to put it lightly.
Diaz went on to submit Ferguson in the fourth round while Khamzat put in a dominant performance against Kevin Holland in the co-main event, taking just over two minutes to lock up a d’arce choke and finish the fight.
Based on both men’s performances on fight night, White believes Khamzat would have put a clinic on Diaz, although he was careful not to take anything away from the latter’s victory over ‘El Cucuy’.
“After you watch the fight, you realize Khamzat vs. Nate Diaz would have been f**king – that wouldn’t have been good,” White said on The Action Junkeez Podcast (h/t MMAJunkie). “Khamzat, I know the fans got pissed at him for not making weight and everything else, but Jesus f*cking Christ. What he went out and did to Kevin Holland – did you see Kevin Holland post the picture the other day that his eyes were all red from the f**king choke? I mean, holy sh*t.”
White hinted at a permanent move up to 185 for Khamzat after UFC 279 as the undefeated Chechnan was reportedly vomiting and fainting while trying to make weight. He weighed in seven and a half pounds over the non-title fight welterweight limit, although he made weight in previous bouts with Rhys McKee, Li Jingliang, and Gilbert Burns, all of whom he defeated.
Khamzat is currently #3 in the UFC welterweight rankings and considered a top contender at middleweight based on his UFC 279 performance against Holland, which was fought at a catchweight of 180 pounds.