Nate Diaz has been away from the Octagon since August 2016, when he lost to Conor McGregor in a rematch at UFC 202.
Since then, he has been on the sidelines waiting for a return fight and was expected to face Dustin Poirier at UFC 230 before “The Diamond” had to pull out with an injury. Another fight almost happened, but a short-notice matchup with Tyron Woodley for the welterweight title fell through when the money the UFC offered wasn’t enough.
“So, why am I going to fight for these people and go out of my way to try and fight when it’s like that?” Diaz said to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto in a recent interview. “And what I’m saying is, is that, with all the criticism that I got for not fighting too, especially for any fighter talking, you’re out of pocket. Shut your ass up, I still have more fights than any of you not fighting.
“Like, I never called you guys, like ‘Can I fight Khabib [Nurmagomedov] and Conor and [Georges St. Pierre]?” Can I fight Tyron Woodley?” That fight [Woodley] fell through because, they were like, short-notice, I’m 172 pounds, 174 pounds. They were like, ‘Hey, you want to fight welterweight title in like f—-ing three weeks or something?’
“And I’m like yeah, lets do this, but yo, give me some – we gonna have to money up for this. But I’m with it whenever and I showed up, too. I’m like, I’ll pop up and do my thing. And then, that’s how that fight went.”
At UFC 241, Diaz will return to take on Anthony Pettis in the co-main event.