Nick Diaz’s comeback to the UFC has been finalized.
Sports that the fight will be a five-round co-main event, making it the second non-title, non-main event fight in UFC history to be scheduled for 25 minutes.
After speculations circulated that Diaz’s (26-9 MMA, 7-6 UFC) return to the octagon will be against former UFC champion Robbie Lawler (28-15 MMA, 13-9 UFC), the organization has finally formalized Diaz’s contract for UFC 266 in September.
T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas will host UFC 266 on September 25. Following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+, the main card airs on pay-per-view.
Multiple sources close to the issue confirmed the Diaz vs. Lawler matchup to MMA Junkie. Because UFC has yet to make an official announcement, the persons asked to remain anonymous. Lawler hasn’t signed his deal yet, but it’s likely to happen soon.
Diaz vs. Lawler will be a rematch that has been 17 years in the making. The last time they fought in the octagon was at UFC 47 in 2004. Diaz knocked out Lawler in the second round to win the fight with a stunning knockout.
Diaz hasn’t competed since UFC 183 in January 2015, when he faced Anderson SilvaAfter Silva tested positive for drostanolone and androsterone and Diaz tested positive for marijuana, the fight was declared a no-contest after Nate Diaz vs. Leon Edwards at UFC 263 in June, UFC president Dana White announced to Yahoo!.
Diaz has previously lost a unanimous decision to then-champion Georges St-Pierre. Diaz was on an 11-fight winning streak from 2008 to 2011, capturing and defending the Strikeforce welterweight belt.
Meanwhile, Lawler most recently competed in August, losing a decision to Neil Magny. He’s on a four-fight losing streak, with his most recent victory coming in 2017. In 2014, Lawler won the UFC welterweight belt. He successfully defended it twice before succumbing to Tyron Woodley in 2016.