At UFC 202, Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor did battle in a rematch of their fight at UFC 196 with McGregor getting his revenge by winning a majority decision. In the aftermath of the fight, Diaz almost immediately began campaigning for a third fight between the two, but UFC President Dana White was adamant that a trilogy fight would not be next. Perhaps in light of this, Diaz stated that he is in "no hurry" for a rematch with McGregor, in part because he feels he won their second encounter as well.
But with the futures of both fighters still up in the air after their epic rematch, it seems the Diaz camp intends to renew its efforts to get a third fight between the two. Speaking with Submission Radio recently, Diaz's boxing coach Richard Perez outlined why he believes running the third fight back is the best course of action for the UFC.
"You know and I know and the media knows that it was such an awesome fight, I mean, it was like a storm. Everybody's telling me, I wanna see that again. They want to see that again. That's gonna be the most big payday for both of them, and for the business, the new UFC people that own it. So if they're smart enough, they would do it. They will set that up. There's nobody else. If Nathan goes and fights B.J. Penn or Georges St-Pierre or anyone like that, or even if McGregor (fights them), that's not gonna be a money-maker. Because those guys haven't fought in a long time and they're not action fighters like Nathan fighting McGregor. If anything, Georges St-Pierre will take him to the ground and just hold him and just wrestle him around. And then he'll probably beat him up because McGregor's not good on the ground, so he'll probably tap him out.
"If I was the UFC owner, I would say let's do No. 3 again. After that, he can go back to 145 if he wants, or 155. That's where they're fighting at, 155 - which is good if they fight at 155, because if Nathan wins he can go for the belt. But that's not what he wants. Just like McGregor, they want the money. They want paydays."
While a Diaz trilogy fight would undoubtedly do big business and is something McGregor has personally shown interest in, it is also not the only big money fight available to the Irish superstar. In fact, there are no shortage of names available for the featherweight champion including current UFC lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez who has been adamant about wanting to fight McGregor.
But the Diaz camp isn't only interested in the McGregor rematch because of money, but because they believe Diaz won the second fight as well, and did so despite suffering some injuries during his training camp which they say severely impeded him come fight night.
"They were bad. The knee was bad and the ribs were bad because when he hurt his knee, he couldn't run. So then when it got a little better, he wanted to start sparring. And he's not in shape because he wasn't really doing much. You know, you work on a little bit of mitts and you work a little bit of sparring and he got better and better. And then when he got (Alan) Sanchez in there, he went a good four hard rounds and he was doing real good, but he was getting a little tired, and that's when Sanchez caught him in the rib and that then put him out there for a while.
"So he can't back out of the fight. And so I know that if he wouldn't have been injured, McGregor would have gotten stopped again and Nathan wouldn't have got hit as much as he did in that first round this last time. Because he was really sharp. He was sparring with guys McGregor's size, really good boxers and he was whooping on them. So that's why I knew it wouldn't happen that way. But it did, and it came out as the best fight of the night. But he got cut, you know, and if there would have been another 30 seconds, he would have tapped him out, cause McGregor was ready to go anyway."
While these injuries were severe enough to seriously affect his training, Diaz refused to withdraw from the bout because, according to Perez, Diaz believed they would pass him over like former lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos who was supposed to fight McGregor but withdrew from the bout with an injury which is what allowed Diaz the opportunity to face McGrego at UFC 196. After McGregor lost, dos Anjos then became an afterthought and instead he faced Eddie Alvarez. Not wanting the same thing to happen to him, Diaz refused to withdraw.
Considering this fact, the injuries suffered by Diaz, the competitiveness of their second fight, and the massive widespread appeal a trilogy bout would have, Perez reiterated that the UFC needs to run back Diaz vs. McGregor one more time.
"[There's] unfinished business. [There needs to be] No. 3. If I was the UFC, I would say, let's let this happen. We're going to make some money off of it, and then have [McGregor] go back to 145."
You can listen to the rest of the interview below where Perez also talks about how a third fight would look between the two of them as well as Diaz's post-fight USADA difficulties.
Results. UFC Fight Night 93 went down Saturday. Here are the results from it.
Flames. Andrei Arlovski says he still has "fire to compete" despite recent loss to Josh Barnett.
Caution. Tony Ferguson blames "slippery" Metro PCS ad for his problems during the Landon Vannata fight.
Risk. Georges St-Pierre says fighting B.J. Penn again would be an "unnecessary risk for my legacy."
Changing of the wind. Rory MacDonald thinks "the tide is turning" with MMA free agency.
EXTRA CREDIT READING
PTSD. Michael Hutchinson of Bloody Elbow discusses Tim Kennedy's statements on PTSD and why they are problematic.
Stipe Miocic is a giant child and it is amazing.
Herb Dean and Big John discussing reffing in MMA.
Gustafsson and Blachowicz share a post-fight beer. Like rugby. This is dope.
So, some very cool people gave me a podcast. This was a trial run to test equipment and I ended up talking about this weekend's fights. Give it a listen if you'd like.
This man knows how to maximize his earnings.
Tough loss. Barnett looked good and is back in the title picture.
Even as a Jose Aldo mark, I think I agree with this.
I think Holloway beats Aldo— Cub Swanson (@CubSwanson) September 5, 2016
Incredible retort by Lando. This guy is one to watch.
I feel ya Tony. I was slippin' in there too.— Lando Vannata (@GroovyLando) September 5, 2016
Can I get a Praise Jesus!! https://t.co/GcZ9Zygbbh— Big John McCarthy (@JohnMcCarthyMMA) September 5, 2016
head butts, knees and kicks 2 the head on the ground, hair pulling, groin attacks, bitting and eyeball attacks is what real fights r made of— Rory MacDonald (@rory_macdonald) September 4, 2016
i just think the oldschool guys who foughf under those rules r so awesome and have so much respect for them, the early an brutal days of mma— Rory MacDonald (@rory_macdonald) September 4, 2016
Person: You can't travel back in time.— Luke Thomas (@SBNLukeThomas) September 3, 2016
CM Punk: WATCH ME PROVE EVERYONE WRONG
Person: No, it's literally not possible.
CM Punk: MAYBE TO YOU
So Matt Hughes is an anti-union guy and he talked about it on Twitter over the weekend. Check the whole thread if you you're interested.
@brianoshepherd True athletes get into the sport because they love it. Not for big $ down the road. Sorry.— Matt Hughes (@matthughes9x) September 2, 2016
Oh, and not everyone appreciated his views.
So Will Brooks had a Tweet calling Rory "used goods" and bitter about the UFC. It appears to have been taken down but this one remains.
Miesha Tate is dope.
Such a crazy labor day weekend for our family but ended in such an amazing and beautiful way. My poor Kai broke her arm at the top of the Mary Jane Falls hike at Mt Charleston. So @mommapook and I basically had to carry her down miles ahead. To our rescue and assistance came the amazing @mieshatate the UFC fighter. She offered to help us carry her down the mountain. Such an amazing and humble person to have met. Our family cant thank you enough for all the help. You saved us easily hours of hiking and helped us get her to the hospital sooner. Thank you again #mieshatate
TODAY IN MMA HISTORY
1997: Yuki Kondo submitted Jason DeLucia with a toehold to defend his King of Pancrase title at Pancrase: 1997 Anniversary Show.
2014: Michelle Waterson successfully defended her atomweight championship, stopping Yasuko Tamada with knees and punches in the main event of Invicta FC 8. Also that night, Katja Kankaanpaa won the vacant strawweight title by submitting Stephanie Eggink with a D'Arce choke.
And so begins a short week. Stay after it kids. See you tomorrow.
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