Nate Diaz continues to ask the UFC to give him the final fight on his contract, but for some reason the promotion hasn't booked the younger Diaz brother in over a year. According to The MMA Hour host Ariel Helwani, they have until October 19 to deliver.
Helwani featured Nate Diaz on a special episode of The MMA Hour last week where Diaz said he was being 'held hostage' by the UFC, who wouldn't give him a bout without signing a new contract. Dana White responded to Diaz's comments during the UFC Long Island post-fight press conference, saying:
“We can’t hold guys hostage. It’s not possible. I owe you three fights a year. If I don’t fight you three times a year, I have to pay you. How can I hold him hostage?”
On Monday's edition of The MMA Hour, Ariel Helwani said:
"He keeps going back to this whole thing, three fights. 'We have to offer him three fights.' They haven't offered him a single fight this year. That's a shoot, that's a fact, and he keeps saying 'We have to offer him.' So when are you going to do this? By the way, they have until October 19 for him to fight ... There's a term on every contract. If I signed with UFC today, the contract states I'm signing for eight fights or four years, and there's an end to that contract. Every contract has an end date."
Helwani has close ties with Nate Diaz and his managers and is clearly in the loop as far as their current negotiations (or lack thereof) with the UFC. He noted that many fighters from Russia and the surrounding regions can't get into the United States right now, and that may include Khamzat Chimaev.
Then he added that UFC 280 in Abu Dhabi falls on October 22, just three days after Diaz's contract expires. He said:
"You know there's nothing they would rather do more than ship him off to Abu Dhabi. But they can't because [his contract] ends three days before. The question is: what happens? I don't think it'll get to that point because I don't think anyone wants to be in breach of a contract. That's why I think he ends up fighting September or so, and he probably doesn't get a lot of notice."
Watch Ariel Helwani discuss Nate Diaz's fighting future below:
Francis Ngannou supports Nate Diaz, tears into Dana White over 'three fight' claim
Nate Diaz was quick to respond to Dana White's press conference claim that the UFC owes all its athletes three fights a year. The Stockton fighter took to Twitter and wrote:
"And in the last 9 months I been offered 0 fights and I asked for 5 legitimate opponents"
UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou added onto Diaz's statement, writing:
"The past 2 years before my injury I didn't get my 6 fights though"
Francis Ngannou is another top UFC fighter looking to leave the promotion because he's unhappy with how he's been treated. One of his biggest complaints is how the UFC left him on the sidelines fighting just once a year in 2020 and 2021.
According to Ngannou, the UFC did things like offer him fights while he was stuck in Cameroon waiting for a visa renewal to get around their contractual requirements.