The return of UFC welterweight Nick Diaz is a story that has been in rotation for some time now. There has been a constant stream of speculation about who exactly he will fight, where he will fight them and if he will even make the walk anytime soon.
Nick, along with his brother Nate, is one of MMA’s most beloved stars. His attitude and ballsy fighting style have seen him become a firm fan favourite all the way through his original run in the UFC, his time as Strikeforce champion and – most recently – in his second run as a UFC athlete.
Despite the fact that he has gone 1-2-1 since his move away from Strikeforce, his performances in each of those fights as well as the legendary opposition he faced has seen him come away from each bout with his reputation not only intact, but strengthened with each successive bout.
Since his last contest, a five-round affair with Anderson Silva, Diaz was handed a frankly ridiculous suspension from competitive MMA, a result of his widely known advocacy and usage of marijuana. Diaz – at this point – has not fought since January of last year, and though he is now free to resume life as a UFC fighter, no opponent has been scheduled for him as of yet.
One man who seems to be ready to change that is the UFC’s welterweight champion, Tyron Woodley, who despite being all but tied down to a rematch with his last opponent, Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson, appears to be ready to reject the elite kickboxer’s title aspirations in favour of a big pay-day and high profile bout with Nick Diaz.
Taking to Twitter, Woodley called out the returning Diaz, putting forward the idea of a bout at next year’s UFC 209 card in the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
— Tyron T-Wood Woodley (@TWooodley) December 7, 2016
Whether or not Diaz takes the bait remains to be seen but I can’t imagine anyone (except for Wonderboy Thompson) having a problem with seeing these go at it for five rounds should Nick decide the time is right for his return.
Cillian Cunningham, Pundit Arena