Nick Diaz could have his work cut out for him upon his return to Octagon action.
Diaz’s last Octagon appearance saw the Stockton Native suffer a unanimous decision loss to Anderson Silva in the main event of UFC 183 back in late January of 2015, however, the contest was later overturned to a No Contest after Silva tested positive for banned substances and Diaz tested over the limit for marijuana metabolites.
A bogus ban of five years and a $165,000 fine was originally given to Diaz as punishment, but after an uproar from fans and media it was soon reduced to 18 months and $100,000. Now that Diaz’s suspension is up and he has been cleared to resume all combat sports related activities, much speculation has arisen as to who will welcome the former welterweight title challenger back to the Octagon.
During a recent interview with MMA Junkie former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos, who has decided to make the jump up to 170 pounds, revealed that he’s gunning for a welterweight debut against Diaz or former welterweight champ Robbie Lawler:
“I think Robbie Lawler is a good name and a fight that interests me,” dos Anjos said. “Nick Diaz. I think I can beat these guys for sure. Those are some of the names on my mind right now.”
“Welterweight is a different division, but I’m not fighting light at welterweight,” dos Anjos said. “Everything I want to do in my life, I want to be at the top. Now I’m at welterweight, and I want to fight the best guys.”
‘RDA’ believes he deserves a big fight due to his history and what he’s done for the sport, and would love to make his welterweight debut in front of his native Brazilian crowd at UFC 212:
“I want to fight in Brazil,” he said. “I just heard about the show with (Max) Holloway and (Jose) Aldo (at UFC 212). My last fight in Rio was in 2007, and I would love to have a chance to fight in my hometown again.”
“I think I deserve it because of my history, because of what I did for the sport,” he said.
Do you think ‘RDA’ is deserving of a big fight against Lawler or Diaz? And how do you think he’ll fare against the UFC’s elite at 170 pounds?