Nick Diaz and brother Nate Diaz are in a very unique situation in the modern mixed martial arts world. Where the UFC has failed in creating compelling, high drawing stars, the Diaz brothers--Nick especially--remain "mainstream attractions." This may be in large part due to antics that some find tasteless or objectionable, but it's difficult to deny that Nick is a bigger star than anyone else currently fighting at welterweight in the UFC.
When Myles Jury recently took to Twitter to announce that he accepted a fight with Nate, stating, "I respect u a lot, BUT... I confirmed to fight you & have been waiting on you for a week. Are we getting after it or what?" it was yet another opportunity for someone in the UFC to put out the message that the brothers were being offered fights but declining to sign on the dotted line.
Nate responded on Twitter, making it clear that the issue was with his contract, "Bout my money #breakbread till then don't call .."
Jury would go on to write up a lengthy Facebook postdevoted to his feelings on fighter pay, outlining such ideas as "All he needs to do is fight and he will make 6 figure FOR SURE." The problem is, of course, that six figures could mean $100,000 or it could mean $999,999. And, if Nate feels that he is worth more than the amount that he would get paid as things stand now, the simple concept of "six figures" likely carries little weight.
Nick would then post a "joke" (or something) on his Instagram, followed by a series of hashtags outlining his own continued struggle to see his pay increased, "#$$ #Makeadeal #ufc #nickdiaz #bloodmoney #1love #ht #hateLV."
With Jon Jones and Ronda Rousey as the UFC's top stars, and only pulling around 350,000 buys this year, Diaz likely feels that he can equal the top drawing power of anyone currently fighting in the UFC. And, he appears content to either see that leverage pay off or simply continue to enjoy his retirement.
Either way, this is as long as we've seen stars hold out in pay disputes with the UFC in such a public fashion.
And neither brother appears willing to stop now.