Dana White, Nate Diaz Try To Mend Fences

By Sean Ross Sapp
Nate Diaz
Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The long running saga between the UFC and Nate Diaz continues. Just weeks after his brother Nick Diaz came out of retirement to re-sign with the UFC, Nate remains in a contract dispute with the company. This weekend, UFC President Dana White said that he spent some time with Diaz and hopes to have him fight again soon.

Though White said the two sides are far apart, it’s a far cry from Diaz’s insulting tweets from himself and manager Mike Kogan. A few months ago, the UFC removed Diaz from his spot in their lightweight rankings, citing “inactivity” due to his unwillingness to accept a fight with Khabib Nurmagomedov.

Diaz, who had just signed a new contract, trashed the UFC’s pay scale, saying that he deserved more than the contract in which he agreed to just months before. While it’s unlikely to find anyone arguing with the fact that fighters should be making more money, many believe the Diaz brothers go about it the wrong way.

Nick’s stock jumped through the roof as he sat out, particularly when longtime welterweight king Georges St-Pierre stepped away from the sport. Despite not having a win since 2011 and only one victory over a current UFC welterweight, Nick signed the richest deal of his career. It doesn’t look as if the UFC is interested in extending Nate the same courtesy.

The Brothers have a point when they note that pay increases won’t happen if fighters accept what is given to them. On the other hand, losing to every fighter who can shoot a respectable double leg take down or hatch a game plan and then complaining about it probably isn’t the best way to gain leverage. If Nate really wanted a pay bump, he probably should have negotiated a better contract to begin with. Yet it probably doesn’t help the UFC’s case when they’re negotiating a monster deal with Gina Carano, who hasn’t fought in five years.

Here’s to a fruitful resolution on both ends. Hopefully fans get to see great fights, the UFC benefits, and Nate gets the money he feels as if he deserves. The Diaz Brothers are forcing the UFC to up the ante, but if they aren’t successful to follow that up, could give UFC ammunition for re-negotiations with other fighters for years to come.

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