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Nick Diaz will have to fight top contender before earning UFC title shot

Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

For all his charms, Nick Diaz has quickly become one of the most popular fighters on the UFC rosters. And in light of recent announcements regarding Alistair Overeem and Chael Sonnen, it wouldn't be without precedent to see Diaz return from a one-year suspension to an instant shot against the winner of Georges St-Pierre vs. Carlos Condit.

However, according to UFC President Dana White, the Stockton brawler will likely have to battle his way back up the welterweight ranks before he sees another shot at the title.

"When Diaz gets off of suspension, he'll probably fight against one of the top guys at 170 pounds, and then we'll see what happens," White said on Wednesday's conference call.

An opportunity to test himself against St-Pierre was the reason Diaz re-signed with the UFC last year, and the match-up nearly came to fruition twice, before a series of missed media opportunities and St-Pierre's ACL injury derailed any plans.

Diaz went on to lose to Condit in a controversial interim title bout at UFC 143, effectively forfeiting yet another shot at St-Pierre, afterward testing positive for marijuana metabolites and earning his suspension. Yet, throughout all of this, White hasn't forgotten about the wishes of the fans.

"A lot of people still want to see that fight," the UFC President conceded.

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