Wednesday 28 September 2016

'I'll whip both their asses in one night'- Nate Diaz on rumoured McGregor-Mayweather bout

Tom Rooney

Published 27/05/2016 | 15:21

Nate Diaz. Photo: Mark J. Rebilas / SPORTSFILE
Nate Diaz. Photo: Mark J. Rebilas / SPORTSFILE

Like anyone with an even partially functioning brain, Nate Diaz has dismissed the incessant rumours heralding a super-fight between Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather for the headline-hogging fiction they are.

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According to Diaz, who recently gave a rare extensive interview to Ariel Helwani of MMAfighting.com, two of the most brash promoters in combat sports are simply doing what they do - monopolising  the spotlight.

After a decade plying his trade at the foremost MMA promotion on the planet, the Californian’s radar for cheap ploys is exceptionally honed.

Indeed, Diaz has enjoyed cult hero status for the majority of his career for exactly that reason; an innate revulsion to pretence and standing idly by as his employers criminally under pay those men and women who risk life and limb to sell their product.

Moreover, he’s long-since proven himself a world class martial artist, and gave the world a stark reminder of his abilities when submitting McGregor in the second round of their makeshift welterweight bout at UFC 196.

To obscure the ignominy of the defeat, Diaz told Helwani, the Dubliner has allowed the notion of a bout with Mayweather to germinate.

“I hear all this Mayweather-McGregor sh*t, and I feel like that's just a big old publicity stunt to hide the fact that he got his ass whooped.

“It's rumors somebody is letting out, because they're both benefitting off each other's fanbases and they're both building off of it.

“They don't care if it happens or not, they're both winning right now from the talk even happening. That's the truth about what's really going. The media is working their way and they're loving it. They're probably having dinner together every night.”

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Of course, Diaz and McGregor were set to resume hostilities at UFC 200 in July, only for the latter to be pulled from the event after refusing to fulfil promotional duties.

McGregor cited a desire to amply prepare for the rematch as the sole reason for defying the UFC. Diaz, on the other hand, took the initial contest on just 11 days’ notice after lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos was forced to withdraw through injury.

A massive underdog, the Stockton native endured an early onslaught before overwhelming McGregor and handing him a first loss in close to six years.

McGregor has been preparing for the yet to rescheduled bout in Portugal, Iceland and now California.

With regards to once more facing the SBG man, Diaz is more than happy to go again, but reckons McGregor is currently using the Mayweather narrative to garner an even more lucrative purse.

"That's exactly what I think. Because every time I hear more about it, I get a call. I'm like, hey, I call your bluff. Fight that mother*cker then. I'll be right here. I'm the only one out of the three of us that can say I'll whip both of their asses in one night, because Conor can't say that. Floyd definitely cannot say that.”

McGregor has recently sparred with former IBF champion Chris van Heerden, a rangy southpaw, much like Diaz, and apparently worked with world renowned coach Freddie Roach. A clear indication he will not overlook Diaz, who is suitably unimpressed.

"You got this guy f*cking bouncing around sparring with some clown over at Freddie Roach's? I don't give a f*ck about that guy. You're flossing that guy? I'll beat that guy's ass too."

Diaz went on to lambast the preferential treatment he believes the UFC have bestowed upon McGregor over the last three years. And sadi that they’re concerned with the prospect of the ‘Notorious’ losing for a second time and, in turn, no longer being the cash cow of old.

Protecting their investment, if you will?

"This mother*cker is on top of the world because the UFC wanted his ass in, and the whole Irish fan-base, and they gave him some push.

“They did that for him and got a little ahead of themselves, and probably didn't realize that. But I did.

“They wanted me to fight him at UFC 200 a week (after UFC 196) or whatever, a couple months later, and I'm like, can't I sit back for a year and a half and fight Dennis Siver (former McGregor opponent) and become the biggest draw and the biggest talk of the town?

“I don't think they want any of that. Instead that start talking about Mayweather and McGregor, and this is the new biggest thing. I'm like, hold up, didn't he just get his ass whooped two months ago?”

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