‘He hasn’t earned the right to a mega-fight’


Nick Diaz’s manager has turned down a potential fight between Diaz and Khamzat Chimaev. MMA legend Nick Diaz’s manager Kevin Mubenga asserted that Chimaev hasn’t earned the right to a mega-fight against Diaz.

According to ESPN MMA’s Ariel Helwani, Kevin Mubenga has revealed that there is zero chance that Nick Diaz’s comeback fight will be against Khamzat Chimaev.

Helwani noted that he spoke to Mubenga earlier today and that Mubenga had the following to say about a Nick Diaz vs. Khamzat Chimaev matchup:

“He’s a good prospect, respectfully, but he hasn’t earned the right to a mega-fight vs. Nick Diaz. So let’s put those rumors to rest. Nate’s up first, our focus is on that. We will narrow down more deserving opponents after the fight.”

As noted in Mubenga’s statement to Ariel Helwani, despite Khamzat Chimaev being a good prospect, a fight between him and Diaz isn’t on the cards right now. Mubenga reiterated that he would like to put the ongoing rumors regarding a possible Nick Diaz vs. Khamzat Chimaev matchup to rest.

Furthermore, Mubenga referenced Nick Diaz’s younger brother Nate Diaz’s upcoming fight against Leon Edwards. Mubenga suggested that their focus is on Nate Diaz first.

Nate Diaz is set to fight top-tier UFC welterweight Leon Edwards in a five-round co-headlining bout at UFC 262 (May 15th, 2021). Mubenga indicated that they will narrow down more deserving opponents for Nick Diaz and Nate Diaz after this fight.

Nick Diaz and Khamzat Chimaev are expected to make their respective MMA comebacks in 2021

Nick Diaz (left); Anderson Silva (right)
Nick Diaz (left); Anderson Silva (right)

Nick Diaz’s last MMA fight was a middleweight bout against fellow MMA legend Anderson Silva at UFC 183 (January 2015). The fight was originally a unanimous decision win for Silva, but it was later overturned to a No Contest (NC) due to Diaz and Silva testing positive for banned substances.

While Nick Diaz tested positive for marijuana, Silva tested positive for drostanolone and androsterone. This marked the third time that Nick Diaz had tested positive for marijuana. Diaz was initially handed a five-year suspension and fined $165,000. However, this punishment was later reduced to an 18-month suspension and a $100,000 fine.

Presently, Nick Diaz is eligible to compete in the sport of MMA. In late 2020, Diaz’s manager Kevin Mubenga notably emphasized that the Stockton legend would be making his comeback this year.

On that note, Nick Diaz was also seen in attendance at the recent UFC 261 event. Diaz purportedly met with UFC president Dana White that day to discuss his long-awaited return to the octagon.

Meanwhile, Khamzat Chimaev – who hasn’t fought since September 2020 – is also expected to return to the octagon this year. Chimaev has been dealing with health issues related to COVID-19 since late 2020. Regardless, the young prospect is said to be on the road to recovery and is aiming to get his career back on track in 2021.

Published 02 May 2021, 03:57 IST


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