Thursday, June 17, 2021

Nate Diaz Explains Long Layoff, Lays Out Ideal 2021 Schedule

Nate Diaz is looking to become much more active in 2021 than he has been in recent years.

After losing to Jorge Masvidal at UFC 244, Nate Diaz has not been seen since, neither inside of the Octagon nor in front of a microphone. He hasn’t been completely off the grid, though. Diaz has remained active on social media but not as a competitor. ESPN’s Ariel Helwani recently caught up with Diaz and asked him what was the reasoning was behind the long layoff.

“Initially, I was looking to rematch for my last fight, but they never pulled the trigger on that,” Diaz said. “So I kind of figured out what was going on. And then, COVID hit, and I was seeing the whole world slow down from COVID. And I was like, alright, well, I ain’t slowing down.

Image result for Nate Diaz training
Nate Diaz

“So I was trying to train and get ready for a fight, but I didn’t feel like much was going on. Nobody was doing much. So then, I sat around for a couple months, and then I got re-motivated, unmotivated, it was kind of like…I didn’t want to fight with the mask on and (expletive), all that.

Nate Diaz Would Like A Much More Active 2021

This has not been the first time that Nate Diaz has been out for over a year. Following his rematch against Conor McGregor in 2019 that saw McGregor avenge his UFC 196 loss to Diaz, Diaz was inactive for three full years. This was outside of the norm for Diaz, who had been an active member of the UFC roster for nearly a decade prior to the McGregor fights, pulling in one performance bonus after another to boot.  He hopes that 2021 will be more of a return to his roots by scrapping in front of a worldwide audience multiple times this year.

Nate Diaz stated in the interview that the minimum amount of times he would like to fight this year is twice, and he set the maximum at four fights, which would tie a career high in the UFC. Diaz would then elaborate on why he would prefer a much more active schedule this year.

“Yeah, I was ready to keep the show going for sure,” Diaz said. “It’s not what I like to do,” Diaz said. “I like to be active. And after taking the three years off before that, I wanted to get active the whole time, but there was also nothing really going on…for me, anyways. And as soon as I got going, I already knew I want to stay active because that’s what I do and what I have done my whole career. And it works better that way.”

Nate Diaz hopes for his next fight to come against Dustin Poirier or Charles Oliveira but at either 165 or 170 pounds.

How many fights do you predict Nate Diaz will have this year?