As one of the most active fighters on the UFC roster, Neil Magny has yet to be booked for a fight. But that hasn't stopped the Brooklyn-raised fighter from planning another fight after his yet-to-be-determined bout.
"When I saw Conor McGregor pull out of the fight and Nate Diaz didn't have an opponent at the time, I thought it would be a great thing for me, I mean, currently in the welterweight division everyone that's ranked above me is already preoccupied with fights and things like that," Magny told Ariel Helwani on Monday's edition of The MMA Hour. "So in my mind, I thought, ‘Why not take a fight against Nate Diaz?' I mean, it will be a huge opportunity for me to keep relevant, give an impressive performance for the fans, and stay relevant in this sport."
Although Magny has made a career of doing favors for the UFC by stepping up and accepting fights on short notice, he's not sure if his "dream" fight with Diaz will come to fruition.
"I'm not sure if I'm going to get it or not, but I definitely put it out there," Magny said. "I let the UFC know that I'm definitely interested in it and I'm back in the gym training. So if that's the fight they want to put together, I'll gladly accept it and I'm ready to go.
"I'm not sure what the times are with Nate Diaz. I'm not sure what Nate Diaz plans to do as far as sitting it out and wait[ing] for Conor McGregor to come back and take a fight against him, so it's all in the air right now. What I don't like is sitting on the bench not having a fight, so I just thought it be better to be proactive and call someone out and get back on the card."
Since the pool of contestants vouching for the Diaz fight at UFC 200 is quite deep and the Stockton fighter hasn't expressed interest in fighting anyone but McGregor, it's unlikely that Magny will get the fight he's been asking for. However, the 28-year-old Magny has a back-up plan, as he hopes to get fights at Chicago's UFC on Fox 20 event and New York City's UFC 205 that's expected to happen in November.
"Perfect scenario for me is that I'll get the fight in Chicago in July so I can fight in New York City later this year," Magny said. "That would be the best way I could see it going. If it happens, great, but the tough part now is, once you climb the ranks, the selection as far as who you are able to fight becomes smaller and smaller. So I'm hoping of going as far back as the top 15 to get an opponent, just so I can fight in both Chicago and New York City."
Magny plans on having a face-to-face conversation with UFC President Dana White, asking him to be placed on the New York card. The welterweight fighter hopes his history of taking on short-notice fights and saving UFC co-main and main events across the world is enough get him a spot on the highly anticipated card, making his dream come true.
"That would be amazing," Magny said. "Just fighting in Madison Square Garden alone, just growing up there and knowing that guys like Mike Tyson have fought there and all these other people. To go to Madison Square Garden and fight thereâthat would be great. That'd be like a dream come true for me."