Any proposed match-up involving Stockton’s own one-time UFC lightweight title challenger and season 5 of The Ultimate Fighter winner, Nate Diaz (19-11) never feels official these days until he’s actually making that walk to the Octagon. Regardless, he is indeed scheduled to make his return to action after a three-year layoff.
It was recently announced that the younger of the Diaz brothers will be set to face off in a welterweight bout against the former WEC and UFC lightweight champion, Anthony “Showtime” Pettis (22-8).
Despite Pettis being the much more active of the two fighters in recent years and having recently successfully made his divisional debut at 170-pounds with a sensational second-round knockout of the highly touted striker and two-time title challenger, Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson, he still finds himself as the underdog in the eyes of the oddsmakers.
BestFightOdds revealed the opening odds for the UFC 241 co-main event favoring Diaz as the slight -120 favorite to Pettis’ +100.
Update: The line has since shifted to Pettis as the -150 favorite with Diaz at +130
For the 34-year old Diaz, this will be his first fight since UFC 202 in August 2016 when he suffered a majority decision loss to former UFC featherweight and lightweight champion, Conor McGregor in their big rematch. With the Pettis fight booked at welterweight, the usual lightweight in Diaz will have had his last three outings come at 170-pounds by the time the fight concludes.
Diaz was originally planning to make a quicker return as he was matched up with the now interim 155-pound champion, Dustin “The Diamond” Poirier for UFC 230 in Madison Square Garden in November 2018. Unfortunately, an injury to Poirier forced him out of the exciting pairing.
With only three fights on tap at the moment for UFC 241 on August 17 including this one, it looks to be a pretty solid event as the main event will see Daniel Cormier try and defend his heavyweight crown for the second time as he takes on the man he took it from in Stipe Miocic.
A long-awaited middleweight clash between perennial top 3 contender, Yoel Romero and the rising Paulo Costa is also in store for the evening in Anaheim, California.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 5/17/2019