August 1 marked the end of Diaz’s suspension term after testing positive for marijuana in his last fight in the UFC against Anderson Silva, who also happened to fail his drug test from their UFC 183 fight.
Diaz spoke with ESPN on Tuesday and says that his suspension has had positive and negative effects on his life.
“There are ups and downs with that, being suspended. People don’t understand, I’ve had 37 fights, three-to-five fights every year, for 17 years. That does something to somebody. These suspensions are the only vacations I’ve ever had. It cost me a lot of money to have a vacation, basically. It’s nice to step back and see there’s more to life. (Before), I didn’t do any hanging out, drinking, meeting people, going to different places — unless it was for a fight.”
Diaz said that with the competition and fights that he has under his belt, no other fighters in the UFC present a fight that will draw a big crowd and turn in the big dollars.
“We’re going to have to see, sit down and have a look at what fans want to see,” Diaz said. “I’m on top right now. I’m on top of this game. There ain’t no ‘giving’ me a shot. I’m giving somebody a shot. If anybody’s getting a shot, somebody’s getting a shot against me, because I’m the guy to beat. These guys aren’t doing any money fighting each other and until they do some money fighting each other, I’m not interested. I’m looking for the right guy to make the right show, do the right numbers. They [sic] we can talk.”
Diaz admitted that fighting isn’t something he does because he enjoys hurting people or vice versa.
“I don’t need none of this s—,” Diaz said. “I walk around, people know who I am. I’ve got friends. I can make ends meet. I grew up around people who have been hustling from the start so, I think I’ve got a bright little future ahead of me — especially if I don’t fight. Why would I want to go out there and fight with somebody, get my face punched and kicked. It’s not my idea of a good time.”