Anderson Silva vs. Nick Diaz is finally a reality. | Mike Sloan/Sherdog.com
The rumors were true: Anderson Silva will face Nick Diaz in his UFC return on Jan. 31.
UFC President Dana White announced the bout during SportsCenter on Tuesday. The matchup will take place at UFC 183 in Las Vegas as part of the promotion’s traditional Super Bowl weekend card. A UFC official confirmed to Sherdog.com that the bout will take place at 185 pounds, Silva’s natural weight class. Diaz normally competes at welterweight.
Silva was recently cleared to spar for the first time since undergoing surgery for a broken leg suffered against Chris Weidman at UFC 168 in December. The longtime middleweight champion relinquished his belt to Weidman at UFC 162 following 17 consecutive victories. “The Spider” turned 39 years old in April.
Diaz signed a three-fight contract extension with the UFC last week. The former Strikeforce welterweight king last fought at UFC 158, losing a five-round verdict to Georges St. Pierre in a 170-pound title tilt. The Stockton, Calif., resident announced his retirement after the bout.
"I'd be interested in fighting [Anderson Silva] and anything that's going to do well," Diaz told UFC.com shortly after his new deal was announced. "As far as Anderson Silva, I think that would be a great fight for people to see because he has my type of style."