After his fight with Anderson Silva at UFC 183 in January 2015, Nick Diaz tested positive for marijuana and was subsequently served a 5-year-ban by the Nevada State Athletic Commission. He was also punished with a hefty fine of $165,000.
Diaz later filed an appeal protesting the commission's verdict and got the ban reduced to a period of 18 months. But due to his inability to pay the $165,000 fine, the Stockton native was considered ineligible to compete.
The 38-year-old later came to an agreement with the NSAC and was allowed to fight. Despite that, Diaz hasn't competed in the octagon for more than six years.
Nick Diaz will make a return to the octagon at UFC 266
After a nearly seven-year long hiatus, MMA royalty Nick Diaz will return to action at UFC 266 later today. He will take on former UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler in a five-round non-title and non-main event fight on the main card. The fight will be a rematch. The pair first competed 17 years ago at UFC 47.
Diaz won the first encounter via a second-round knockout. In the lead-up to the fight, the Stockton native stated that he had grown more dangerous as a fighter over the years and believed he would get the better of 'Ruthless' again. During an episode of UFC Countdown, he said:
"I’m actually way more of a dangerous fighter than I was when I fought Robbie Lawler for the first time. I’m going to be really unstoppable having made the right decisions... I’m going to beat Robbie again."
The UFC 266 card will be headlined by a featherweight title bout between Alexander Volkanovski and Brian Ortega. 'The Great' is coming off two back-to-back wins against Max Holloway and is currently undefeated in the UFC. Ortega also delivered an impressive performance in his last fight against 'The Korean Zombie' Chan Sung Jung. He defeated the perennial contender via a unanimous decision.
The co-main event will feature another title bout. Valentina Shevchenko will defend her flyweight title against Lauren Murphy.
Read here: Latest info on Nick Diaz's Net Worth