The event was thrown into disarray last week after Khamzat Chimaev missed weight by 7.5 pounds, forcing the cancelation of his main card bout with Nate Diaz. That saw desperate, last-minute matchmaking negotiations ensue behind the scenes, ultimately resulting in a complete reshuffling of the main card matchups.
Given that negotiations took place just a day before UFC 279, many assumed the UFC were forced to dole out huge amounts of cash to persuade the main card fighters to accept their new matchups. However, at the UFC 279 post-fight press conference, when asked which fighter received the biggest pay bump, White seemed to suggest that no one did.
“Who got the biggest bump? Well these guys all have deals,” said White
Nate Diaz Seems To Refute White’s Claim
But later at the presser, Nate Diaz seemed to refute White’s claim. As a man who knows his worth as one of the UFC’s biggest stars and isn’t afraid to demand that he’s paid accordingly, Diaz provided an insight into the last-minute negotiations, intimating to press that he did indeed receive a hefty lump sum.
“I was like, ‘You got to pay me if you want to switch people on me in one f*cking day, I just cut 15 pounds and made me change my opponent, you guys got to give me more than you give any other champion in this whole organization.’ And they’re like, ‘Stupid, we already give you..’ [and I was like] ‘Oh, I want more than that then,” said Diaz.
Diaz, who defeated Tony Ferguson via submission in the UFC 279 main event, has now come to the end of his UFC contract. In his post-fight Octagon interview, the 37-year-old said that he’ll be looking to pursue opportunities in other sports, but also left the door open to making a UFC return.
What’s your take on Dana White hinting that no UFC 279 fighter received a pay bump?