Leave it to Tyron Woodley to stoke the fires of his now-potential fight versus Nate Diaz at December 30’s UFC 219 from Las Vegas.
The year-ending pay-per-view (PPV) event currently stands without a main event six weeks away from taking place, and rumors arose yesterday that Diaz was back in training camp and would face the welterweight champion in the card’s headlining bout.
“The Chosen One,” who has been calling out for a true “money fight” ever since he won the belt from Robbie Lawler in July 2016, is currently on the sidelines nursing a shoulder injury suffered in his title defense over Demian Maia at July’s UFC 214.
But the prospect of a bout with a Diaz brother looms large; so much so that Woodley revealed to ESPN with a quick quote today (Wed., November 15, 2017) that he would be willing to come back sooner than expected from the injury to face Diaz at UFC 219:
“If Nate wants to go UFC 219, I’m ready.”
Woodley had previously called for a bout with Nate’s older, larger brother Nick, but with that fight having little-to-no chance of happening, it looks like “The Chosen One” will take the next best thing – and perhaps an even bigger name.
The youngest Diaz has been out of action since his close majority decision loss to UFC lightweight champion Conor McGregor at UFC 202 in August 2016 and appeared to be holding out for a highly lucrative trilogy match, something that appeared to be close to coming true for “The Notorious'” return to action.
But with McGregor causing a stir and facing potential sanctions due to his highly-publicized Bellator 187 melee in addition to most fans calling for him to face interim 155-pound champion Tony Ferguson next, that fight has lost a ton of heat in recent weeks.
Diaz’ reported request for an outlandish payday may not have helped, either. With that said, it’s tough to envision the UFC coming up with a number that would bring him back to fight Woodley. Maybe they will, but the crunch is on to book a true headliner-worthy main event for UFC 219, and the fight, although high on name value, would only further the criticism the UFC has gained for booking title fights that have little or no merit attached.
What are your thoughts on the potential booking?