In the co-main event of UFC 241, Nate Diaz will make his long-awaited return to the octagon. There, he is set to take on former UFC lightweight champion, Anthony Pettis in a welterweight bout.
It will mark the first time that Diaz has stepped foot in the Octagon since August 2016, where he lost by majority decision to Conor McGregor.
Since then, it was initially reported that the Stockton native was holding out for a trilogy bout with McGregor.
However, at UFC 230 Nate Diaz was supposed to return to face Dustin Poirier, but that fight ended up not happening.
When he does indeed return it will be nearly three years since his last fight. Add that with Pettis coming off a phenomenal knockout win over Stephen Thompson in his welterweight debut, Michael Bisping believes it will be a tough and dangerous return fight for Nate Diaz.
“I think this is a dangerous fight for Nate Diaz, especially coming back. He hasn’t fought since Conor McGregor, right? 2016, that’s three years ago. That’s a long time,” Bisping said on his “Believe You Me” podcast (transcribed via MMANews). “Now, he’s a pentathlete or whatever he is. Triathlons and all that type of stuff. That’s all well and good, but that doesn’t mean just cause someone runs around a f*cking track and swims a bunch they can go in there and fight. Now, of course, he has the mentality but still, and I say this with respect cause I respect both Diaz brothers and what they’ve accomplished in this sport, time away from the sport can change things. And three years is a lot of f*cking time and Pettis has still been in there the whole time.”
Anthony Pettis has fought seven times since Diaz last competed inside the cage. Bisping mentions ring rust could very well be a factor but only time will tell if he is right.
Do you agree with Michael Bisping that Anthony Pettis is a dangerous return fight for Nate Diaz? Sound off in the comment section, PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 5/23/2019