Anderson Silva’s manager Ed Soares indicated earlier this week that Nick Diaz was one of a handful of fighters they were looking at as a potential for his expected return from a leg break early next year, and it appears that the Stockton native is receptive to that idea.
Diaz, who opted for early retirement after his title loss to Georges St.Pierre back in March of last year, has so far been resistant to the UFC’s attempts to coax him back into the Octagon, but the chance to fight one of the sport’s greatest ever fighters has caught his attention.
On this week’s edition of the UFC Tonight show on FOX Sports 1, Ariel Helwani revealed that Diaz saw a potential fight with Silva as one of the biggest fights in MMA history and so he’d consider it, but only if the price was right.
The winner of Michael Bisping and Cung Le later in the year was the other option Silva and his team had highlighted for his comeback fight, but there’s no doubt that taking on Diaz would be the bigger fight and could be a big hit on pay-per-view.
However, the question now is whether the UFC would be able to come to financial terms with Diaz. The former Strikeforce welterweight champion had asked for $500,000 to return to the UFC a couple of months ago despite still being under contract for a significantly lower basic salary, an amount that the promotion had balked at.
Bearing in mind that the UFC once paid boxer James Toney the same amount for a one-off encounter with Randy Couture, perhaps it’s not so reasonable for Diaz to ask for the same given that this could be a money-spinning headliner for them.
Either Bisping or Le may well prove to be an easier fight to make and have less potential for problems in the lead-up to the bout though, so we’ll have to wait and see what the UFC decides to do, and given that Silva doesn’t want to return until the beginning of next year there’s no rush at this stage.