UFC president Dana White says that only “an idiot” would book Nick Diaz to step in the Octagon vs. UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman.
Diaz returns to the Octagon this Saturday night at UFC 266 when he meets longtime rival Robbie Lawler in a middleweight rematch. Ahead of his comeback, Diaz spoke to ESPN in an interview and said that he thinks the UFC should have matched him up with Usman instead of Diaz. Speaking to Yahoo! Sports, White responded to the comments from Diaz, explaining quite simply why the UFC never seriously entertained a Diaz vs. Usman fight.
“You think he should be fighting Kamaru Usman? You know what I’ve been saying lately: Kamaru Usman is the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world, OK? (He beat Jorge) Masvidal twice, Gilbert Burns, Tyron Woodley, (Rafael dos Anjos), Demian Maia, Leon Edwards. I mean, the list of guys that this guy has beaten is unbelievable, and the way that he beat them,” White said (h/t MMAjunkie.com). “He’s the world champion in that division and he’s the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world. Does anybody out there think that that’s who Nick Diaz should come back and fight after not fighting for seven years? That would be an idiot that would make that fight.”
Fighting Usman is a difficult-enough proposition without even factoring in the time off for Diaz, so it was likely for the best that the UFC didn’t book this fight. Instead, Diaz has the opportunity to fight another former champion in Lawler and, with a win, immediately become a title contender again. But as far as stepping into the cage to fight someone like Usman, that sounds like it would be a tall task even if Diaz is as confident as he can be.
Do you agree with Dana White that only an idiot would have booked Kamaru Usman vs. Nick Diaz for his return fight?This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM