Diaz: UFC Wants to Prevent McGregor Trilogy
After Conor McGregor’s historic performance in winning the lightweight title on Saturday, everyone wants to predict who he is fighting next. There are a host of viable contenders: Khabib Nurmogomedov, Tony Ferguson, a featherweight rematch with Jose Aldo…and then there’s always the lurking Nate Diaz, the only man to best McGregor in the Octagon, who wants to close the trilogy.
Diaz was in attendance at UFC 205 when McGregor defeated lightweight champion Eddie Alvarez. If it were up to the UFC, however, Nate and his brother Nick wouldn’t have been present in Madison Square Garden for the event. Diaz told ESPN’s Bret Okamoto that the promotion is purposely keeping him away from McGregor to quell the anticipation for a trilogy fight.
"I think it’s just to put him more on a pedestal that they already have put him on," Diaz said. "It’s whatever, though. I know what happened in the fight between me and him the last time, and he knows what happened, and people know what happened."
"The UFC knows that’s a bad idea for him. Why didn’t I get tickets to this fight? I said, ‘I’ll leave him alone. I don’t want to fight the guy. Just let me get a seat.’ Me and my brother, they didn’t want to let either one of us in here."
Diaz shocked the world when he defeated McGregor in March, choking out the featherweight champion in the second round of a welterweight contest. The two rematched at 170 lbs. again in August, and McGregor won the back-and-forth bout by majority decision.
While he gave his respect to McGregor for his performance at UFC 205, Diaz did not seem to be overflowing with praise for his Irish rival. Seemingly of the belief that he beat McGregor in their rematch, Diaz says that McGregor is undeserving of the legendary status some are now granting him.
"Congratulations to Conor. He did a great job, got the two belts — but I just know that me and him both know what happened in [our] fights and that ‘greatest of all time’ stuff needs to just come to an end."
"I don’t remember any of the greatest of all times getting worked over like [he was] in the last two fights."