Lawler welcomed Diaz back inside the Octagon. The two did battle on the main card of UFC 266. This was a rematch from their 2004 encounter, which Diaz won via second-round knockout.
This go-around, things played out differently. Lawler scored the third-round TKO finish in the rematch.
At the post-fight press conference, Lawler expressed his belief that he ruined whatever plans the UFC had for Diaz.
“No, I did not think I was gonna fight him, and then two months ago when they offered me the fight I was like, ‘alright like, this fight gets me excited.’ But I don’t think everyone expected to see me the way I was today. I think they thought they were gonna see the guy who’s been fighting for the last one and a half, two years and that wasn’t who showed up today. I spoiled some plans.”
Diaz hadn’t been in action since Jan. 2015. While he was active in the standup, his punches didn’t seem to have much effect on Lawler, who kept marching forward. This is Lawler’s first victory since July 2017. Diaz remains winless since Oct. 2011.
It’ll be interesting to see where both men go from here. Robbie Lawler didn’t commit to his next opponent and told reporters he believes the UFC will figure something out. As for Nick Diaz, you can never be too sure with the Stockton native.