Nate Diaz returns from the wilderness when he takes on Anthony Pettis in a welterweight fight at UFC 241 on Aug. 17 in a likely contender for “Fight of the Night.”
Diaz hasn’t fought inside the Octagon since his closely contested majority decision loss to Conor McGregor at UFC 202 in August 2016.
Former lightweight champion Pettis decided to move up a division earlier this year where he knocked out former two-time welterweight title challenger Stephen Thompson in March propelling him up to No. 8 in the official UFC 170-pound rankings after just one fight.
Former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping talked about the fight match up during a recent edition of his “Believe You Me” podcast and said the deciding factor in the bout could be Diaz’s long absence from the sport (transcribed by MMANews.com).
“I think this is a dangerous fight for Nate Diaz, especially coming back,” Bisping said. “He hasn’t fought since Conor McGregor, right? 2016, that’s three years ago. That’s a long time. Now, he’s a pentathlete or whatever he is. Triathlons and all that type of stuff. That’s all well and good, but that doesn’t mean just because someone runs around a f---ing track and swims a bunch they can go in there and fight. Now of course he has the mentality but still, and I say this with respect because I respect both Diaz brothers and what they’ve accomplished in this sport, time away from the sport can change things. And three years is a lot of f---ing time and Pettis has still been in there the whole time.”
UFC 241 will take place at the Honda Center in Anaheim and will be headlined by a heavyweight title bout rematch between champion Daniel Cormier and Stipe Miocic. A hugely exciting middleweight fight is also scheduled between two powerful juggernauts when Yoel Romero and Paulo Costa throw down.