It’s far from a secret that UFC president Dana White and embattled former lightweight title challenger Nate Diaz aren’t exactly on the same page regarding the polarizing bad boy’s contract negotiations to return to the Octagon.
The UFC has been at odds with Diaz and his management for quite some time now, resulting in his removal from the rankings list due to inactivity. In truth, the whole saga has become a bit overblown, prompting Diaz’ manager Mike Kogan to compare it to daytime talk show Jerry Springer.
So while it doesn’t seem like the younger Diaz brother will be making his way back to the UFC anytime soon, it does sound like at least a small amount of progress is being made towards that goal. Speaking at this weekend’s UFC Fight Might Macau media scrum from the CotaiArena, White detailed a recent night out with Diaz, noting that the two “buddies” had a lot of fun:
“Physically it was a pretty crazy night. Crazy fun night”, Dana laughed. “But Nate and I got to spend some quality time together. We were out having fun”, Dana said. “We talked business for a little while. We got together in a room, and where he is and where we are, we’re not even close.” – via Bloody Elbow
So that may not sound like Diaz is even close to coming back, but the president noted that he would be sitting down with him again when he gets home from his media tour abroad in early September:
“But Nate and I got together that night and talked, and we’re going to get back together when I get in the country.”
As usual, the situation with Diaz and the UFC is a murky one at best, amplified by the fact that Diaz’ good friend and training partner Gilbert Melendez was recently given a lucrative new contract and a title shot after playing hardball with the promotion by threatening to sign with rival Bellator.
Diaz could be looking for a similar deal, but it’s difficult to say he deserves such treatment without a few bounce back wins. When will we see Diaz return to the Octagon? Will he ever?