Nick Diaz seems to have no intention of walking away from the action inside the UFC octagon anytime soon. The older Diaz sibling has reportedly claimed that he would like to fight Israel Adesanya for his comeback fight next year.
'El Diablo' was last seen in the octagon at UFC 266 in September 2021, when he lost to Robbie Lawler via a third-round knockout (TKO). However, that did not seem to hamper the former UFC title challenger's confidence in himself and his abilities.
While hosting a fan meet-and-greet in Las Vegas to watch UFC 282, Nick Diaz called out Adesanya as his next opponent. He reportedly said:
“You can see me back on top in 2023, I’m making a comeback. I’m going to be quicker than ever, stronger than ever, better than ever. I’m just gonna be a whole new me. Whoever is on top at the time, preferably Israel Adesanya, if he gets his title back.”
While it seems unlikely that 'El Diablo' will get his shot at 'The Last Stylebender' anytime soon, considering the Nigerian-born Kiwi's much-desired rematch with his long-time foe Alex Pereira, it certainly raises questions about the viability of Nick Diaz's comeback aspirations.
Diaz last won a bout in 2011 against B.J. Penn at UFC 137 via unanimous decision, and since then, he has lost thrice and has one no-contest in his last four fights. His younger sibling, Nate Diaz, recently announced his exit from the UFC after beating Tony Ferguson at UFC 279.
When Stephen Thompson called out Nick Diaz before UFC Orlando
Nick Diaz may not get matched up against Israel Adesanya soon, but the former Strikeforce champion may have a potential opponent in Stephen Thompson. Thompson recently put on an enthralling striking display against Kevin Holland at UFC Orlando, emerging victorious in the fourth round after Holland's corner chose to end the contest.
While there is no doubt about Nick Diaz being well past his prime, the Diaz brothers have lost no stock over the years and still remain favored among MMA fans. It seems that 'Wonderboy' is aware of this crowd-pulling factor that the Diaz brothers bring and wants a piece of that action for himself.
Speaking to Submission Radio in a November interview before his bout at UFC Orlando, Thompson iterated his desire to face the older Diaz brother in the octagon:
"I would love to make this happen now. That would be really cool. So, if I go out there and win the fight this Saturday, get my hand raised, and that's still an option and a potential fight for me. Yes, a hundred perecent."
Catch the full interview below: