Steve Heath (Nick Diaz’s 1st MMA Coach):
Sometimes he gets upset, when you ask me why he gets upset it’s his inability to express himself verbally. That’s why he’s a fighter, but when he gets in that ring he’s a poet. A poet in motion.
Nick Diaz is back.
Those are words the mixed martial arts community has collectively waited to say for years.
Kevin Mubenga (manager of Diaz) claimed in December that he was 99.999% sure Nick would return this year. He proved to be a man of his word.
However, the irony of Nick Diaz getting scheduled to fight Robbie Lawler in Vegas on the same day the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) decides to lift its ban on marijuana, gives me undeniable proof that we’re living in a simulation. How else could these events unfold so perfectly?
It’s been over 2,397 days since Nick Diaz was last seen inside of the octagon. The date was January 15, 2015, the opponent was Anderson Silva. Diaz was 31 years old. Later that year in September, the NSAC suspended Nick for five years and fined him $165,000 following a failed drug test of marijuana metabolites at UFC 183. On April 9, 2018, Diaz became eligible to compete again…And so we waited.
The Stockton Bad Boy is now 38 years old and has FINALLY been scheduled to step back into the cage. A rematch 17 years in the making, slated for September 25th, will go down between Ruthless Robbie Lawler and Nick Diaz.
This was the UFC’s original BMF fight (2004, UFC 47). The first time they met Diaz was only 20 years old (Lawler 22). They were so young that Joe Rogan actually said, “I didn’t expect to see Diaz taunting Lawler.” Taunting, something we now directly relate to the Diaz brothers, but at the time, Nick was still paving the way.
While this fight is neither a main nor a co-main event, given we have title fights between Volkanovski and Ortega, and Shevchenko vs. Murphy, it still is booked for five rounds. That’s 25 potential minutes of Diaz – Lawler war. Will we need it? I highly doubt it. While they were much younger and less experienced, it only took 6 minutes and 31 seconds for Nick and Robbie to settle the score in 2004.
The former Strikeforce welterweight champion and older brother of Nate Diaz put an epic halt to a charging Lawler when he landed a flush overhand right. Lawler’s aggression and raw emotion were what ultimately led to his demise. This was the fight where Diaz coined the phrase “Stockton Motherfucker”, as he repeatedly used it to antagonize Lawler.
Nick Diaz! Robbie Lawler! #OnThisDay – we saw future stars collide 💥[ 📱 Watch more classics on @UFCFightPass ] pic.twitter.com/KU1RfIvG52
— UFC (@ufc) April 2, 2021
Why are people so drawn to Nick Diaz?
Well, let me put it this way. Have you ever wanted to tell your boss to kick rocks? You can’t though, and I get it, you have bills to pay. But when you see Nick flipping the bird, saying exactly what he means, or laying down in front of one of the most dangerous fighters in combat sports history, a part of you goes, “Yea, that’s right Nick, talk your shit.” (Please do not go and get fired or fight your boss.)
You almost live vicariously through Diaz’s honesty. He’s incredibly hard not to root for. Attitude aside, Diaz is a pioneer, one of the most skilled and respected welterweights of all time. He’s held titles in the WEC, IFC, and Strikeforce. His name is synonymous when it comes to offensive jiu-jitsu and rapid-fire boxing.
Fans across the globe can resonate with the personality Diaz has. On top of the fact that he’s fearlessly himself, Nick is also undeniably interesting. His life story is unbelievable, and his hobbies are smoking weed and running triathlons. Then right when you think you’ve seen it all, Diaz decides he wants to teach self-defense classes in partnership with the company Stripchat. Nick is an anomaly who can rarely be compared to anyone in the past or present.
Let Me Be Blunt With You
If you ask me something stupid I’m gonna answer it with something stupid, if I hear myself talk something stupid and I’m really pissed off, depressed, and bent out of shape about it, I’m gonna throw a fucking really serious fit for no fucking reason. – Nick Diaz
Nick Diaz fight week is about to hit MUCH differently.
There’s a lot of questions hardcore fans will have. Diaz was once on an 11 fight win streak from 2008-2011 before losing bouts to Carlos Condit, GSP, and Anderson Silva. How will he look? From what we’ve seen he appears to be in peak shape, working alongside his brother Nate and various other fighters like Tyson Fury.
After such a long hiatus, will ring rust be a factor? Will Lawler’s activity be why he’s more adept come fight night? Nick Diaz helped MMA grow significantly, but has it evolved too much? I don’t know, we don’t know, but everyone who’s ever watched a Nick Diaz fight can’t wait to find out. And will we get Nate in Nick’s corner? I sure hope so. I hope the entirety of the Nick Diaz Army comes out. Jake Shields, Gilbert Melendez, Kron Gracie, bring them all.
I feel as if the personality of the Diaz brothers is often misconstrued, specifically Nick’s. The Diaz brothers carry a certain persona. They have an aura around them and a reputation that they can’t shake. They’re as real as it gets. But do not be fooled, those brothers are filled with love, passion, and intelligence.
They love their family, their fans, and their friends as much as any fighter in the world, and they show it. Their passion for fighting is unmistakable. That warzone, that kill or be killed mentality, is where they truly thrive. Intelligence. Just because someone doesn’t throw words together like a scholar does not make them unintelligent. Nick Diaz is a third-degree black belt. That takes years of discipline, focus, and intelligence.
I will leave you with this.
The last words Nick Diaz spoke in the octagon:
I love my fans, I’m grateful for everything.
Even without his return on September 25th, we were always grateful for Nick. The definition of uncommon amongst uncommon people.
Still can't quite believe we're going to watch Nick Diaz return to the Octagon in 2021 and he's fighting Robbie Lawler again.
— UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) August 11, 2021