While undefeated UFC lightweight Myles Jury is on board with a potential matchup against Nate Diaz, it appears as though the former lightweight title challenger doesn’t share the same enthusiasm. Diaz seems intent on not fighting again unless he gets a better contract with the organization. His Octagon inactivity has taken him out of the top-15 rankings at a time when he could be trying to make a run for another possible title shot.
Diaz hasn’t fought since an impressive first-round destruction of Gray Maynard at the TUF 18 Finale last November. While Diaz looked outstanding in that contest, it was Maynard’s third knockout loss in four fights. Diaz had suffered losses to former champion Benson Henderson and Josh Thomson before picking “The Bully” apart in spectacular fashion. While he vaulted up the ladder in the rankings after that outstanding effort, he failed to build on that momentum.
Since that victory Diaz has made it clear to everyone on social media that he’s unhappy with his current deal. He previously turned down what would’ve been a prime opportunity against unbeaten contender Khabib Nurmagomedov and now it appears a matchup against the No. 9 ranked Jury will also fail to materialize. UFC President Dana White has made it clear that Diaz is in no position to renegotiate a new contract based on one victory in his last three fights.
While Diaz continues to ask the UFC to sweeten the financial pot to make it worth his while, the best way for the talented fighter from Stockton to make his case is by letting his fists do the talking. The Season 5 winner of The Ultimate Fighter should adopt the approaches of lightweight contenders Donald Cerrone and Henderson by staying active and being willing to face anyone.
It’s a shame the current stalemate exists because Diaz is an extremely entertaining fighter who has made 19 previous Octagon appearances. His fan-friendly style has produced a whopping 12 post-fight bonuses. He holds notable career victories against Melvin Guillard, Takanori Gomi, Jim Miller and Cerrone. He remains one of the best 155-pound fighters in the promotion but the present situation is a losing one for the UFC, Diaz and his fans.
Diaz shouldn’t be wasting his window of opportunity by staying on the sidelines. While he might be disgruntled with his current contract, Diaz is the one who agreed to those terms. The money he’d make by taking a fight is far greater than nothing at all. Another victory or two would be leverage in improving his current financial situation and would also put him back into title contention. A fight against Jury is one that Diaz should take.
Rick LaFitte is an MMA Writer for Rant Sports