The UFC have officially announced that a previously announced lightweight match-up between Nate Diaz and Jim Miller will headline ‘UFC On FOX 3’ on May 5th in a five round fight.
Both Diaz and Miller are currently high flyers in the 155lb division and a win for either could well lead to a title shot, so this is certainly a significant fight and both men are hard-nosed, exciting competitors so this should deliver the kind of entertainment that last weekend’s ‘UFC On FOX 2’ missed out on.
Having said that neither Diaz or Miller has the kind of star power that’s likely to deliver blockbuster ratings for FOX so it’s a little surprising that this is going to be placed front and center rather than in a co-main event slot where most people expected it to land when it was first tagged for the show.
Both Diaz and Miller are accustomed to headlining shows on smaller level ‘Fight Night’ cards on Spike and FX, but this will be the first time either has headlined a higher profile event.
Meanwhile, a heavyweight bout between strikers Pat Barry and Lavar Johnson has also now been signed to feature on the main card of the ‘UFC on FOX 3’ card.
Stylistically it’s a match-up that makes a lot of sense – in fact I suggested it myself on this site after watching Johnson KO Joey Beltran on the ‘UFC On FOX 2’ preliminary card on Saturday night.
Realistically it’s not a major fight for the division or a showcase of two of the heavyweight classes top talents, with both Barry and Johnson likely to stay in the lower-to-mid level on the ladder unless they develop their all-round MMA games.
Nevertheless, it is a bout that’s should see plenty of fists and feet flying and given that when they have a combined 20 knockouts in 23 career wins and exciting finish could be on the cards.
And after the underwhelming nature of the last FOX event that’s clearly the route the UFC is intending to go down now – putting on fights that should deliver for the fans on the night rather than relying on big names and title belts to lure in the fans.