Nick and Nate Diaz are two of the toughest and most respected fighters in UFC history, but the Brawling Brothers may have picked the wrong opponent in Khabib Nurmagomedov.
The undefeated Russian, who retired after beating Justin Gaethje at UFC 254, currently enjoys watching fights rather than competing – but his motivation and desire remains as strong as ever.
Diaz, who called the 29-0 fighter a “p ****” in January was never one to back down after a fight after fighting on the streets of Stockton as a child.
The first incident took place at the World Series of Fighting (now the Professional Fighters League) in 2015 when Khabib was watching his brother fight on the same night as Jake Shields, a friend of the Diaz brothers.
Diaz recalled the altercation when asked by Ariel Helwani in October 2019 if he would be interested in fighting UFC lightweight champion Khabib.
“No, I was when it was interesting, now it’s like kicking a dead dog,” he said.
“I’m not in that bully shit he’s [Khabib] in bullying and all that is his thing.
“When I ran into him and his team at the World Series, I was standing there watching Jake, my friend, fight. And they took a group photo with me behind them, just to make fun of me, to make fun of me.
“[Khabib] it’s like ‘Ah, come on, man’ and they’re all laughing, 12 Russian guys. I slapped him for making fun of me and I was like “What?” And he didn’t do anything.
“I was furious outside,” Diaz added of the 2015 incident. “So I waited for him to come over there and I went to look for him again and he ran away. .
” I should not have done that. It was reckless, it was stupid. I was angry, but he was picking on me. So now he’s trying to act like ‘Mr Make It Right’. “I’m Mr Good, this guy is shit, I don’t need that trash talk.”
“Regardless, you were going to take it out on me … trying to act like the victim, this Conor [McGregor] lashed out at him.
Security arrived and duly kicked younger brother Diaz out, before the spirits heated up again at UFC 239.
Despite all the action on that card in July 2019 (which saw Jorge Masvidal and Amanda Nunes record massive knockout wins), the two came close to fighting once again.
“Those two were two rows apart and then they started to fight and we broke it up and we settled it,” said Dana White. BT Sport.
When asked if he knew what was said, White replied, “I’m sure a lot of bad things have been said. I’m not sure exactly… I’m sure it wasn’t good.
Nick is expected to return to the Octagon on Saturday night in a rematch of his 2004 win over Robbie Lawler.
Having not fought since 2015, fans are eager to see if the 38-year-old still has the skills to match his never-say attitude.