UFC 196: Nate Diaz Reminds Folks “I’m a Big Fight Too”
By FCF Staff
Nate Diaz has been booked to fight one of the biggest names in the game at UFC 196, but the veteran is reminding observers he’s also a considerable draw.
Diaz will face Conor McGregor on Saturday night, after agreeing to step in for the injured lightweight champ, Rafael dos Anjos. McGregor is coming off a quick, KO win over Jose Aldo in December, and could be the promotion’s biggest star, next to Ronda Rousey.
When RDA was forced to withdraw due to a broken foot, several fighters were reportedly called as possible replacements, including Aldo, Frankie Edgar, Urijah Faber and Donald Cerrone. While the first two declined, since Aldo wasn’t in fight shape and Edgar is injured, the UFC elected to go with Diaz (quote via UFC.com):
“It’s the biggest fight,” Diaz said. “Obviously everybody wants that fight (with McGregor). But I’m a big fight too. It’s not one-sided. If you’re gonna fight anybody, it’s me. (The UFC) know it. I didn’t call for this fight. The UFC kept calling. This fight was gonna happen eventually.”
“I knew when I first saw that guy talking about coming up in weight that we were going to be fighting.”
Diaz is coming off a unanimous decision win over lightweight contender Michael Johnson in December.