UFC president Dana White has had to jump through hoops to get Nate Diaz back in the Octagon and, alas, the fan favorite will make his long awaited return to the cage against former lightweight champ Anthony Pettis at UFC 241.
Asked why he accepted the Pettis fight, Diaz, who hasn’t fought since his 2016 majority decision loss to Conor McGregor, hailed ‘Showtime’ as the most entertaining fighter in the UFC.
“I think it is the best fight,” Diaz said in a recent interview with ESPN’s Ariel Helwani (transcript via Cole Shelton of Sherdog.com). “He is coming off of a good win and he’s one of the top guys, one of the better guys in the division. Most entertaining fighter in the UFC, I like that.”
The Diaz brothers have been notoriously critical of ‘boring’ fighters, but Pettis, who is renowned for his infamous Showtime kick against Benson Henderson at WEC 53, is expected to bring the heat at UFC 241.
“It’s a guy I actually enjoy watching over the rest of these fighters,” Diaz said of Pettis. “Everyone is getting boring, the fight game. If I’m going to take part in any fights, I want a fight that is interesting to not only me but to the fight fan. If I’m a fight fan I want to see an interesting fight, not a boring fight.”
Pettis last fought at UFC Fight Night 148, where he knocked out Stephen Thompson in the second round of the main event at Nashville’s Bridgestone Arena.
UFC 241, which is expected to feature Pettis vs. Diaz in the co-main event, takes place later this year, August 17 at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.