By: Buju 18 months after his last fight, and nearly 11 months since he was originally suspended for 5 years by the NSAC (it was overturned to 18 months and a $100,000 fine) Nick Diaz is free to return to MMA competition. There has been much speculation on who his opponent may be when he makes the walk again, with GSP and Robbie Lawler among those mentioned.
As one of the most beloved and fun-to-watch fighters in all of MMA, everyone has their opinions on who it should be and what they want to see. We here at Untitled are no different, so to celebrate the return of Stockton's Own... Here are 5 guys I'd like to see share the cage with Nick Diaz.
1. Robbie Lawler
Coming off of his championship losing KO to Tyron Woodley, Robbie Lawler finds himself in an awkward spot in the division he was King of just days ago. With Stephen Thompson seen as the unanimous number one contender and a GSP return looming, the former champion is seemingly a couple of wins away from returning to title contention. It's been over 12 years since the first matchup between Lawler and Diaz, a fight Diaz won by KO, and both have become huge stars in the sport since that night in Las Vegas. In a bout that's almost guaranteed to be a banger, it's hard to argue against putting this rematch together.
2. Matt Brown A matchup between Brown and Diaz would set up a bout between two fighters who A.) need a win, and B.) like to stand and bang bro. Depending on how long "The Immortal" is off following his KO loss to Jake Ellenberger, this would be a Fight of the Night cantidate regardless of the card it's in.
3. BJ Penn Much like Matt Brown, BJ Penn is also looking for a win after a losing skid. And much like Nick Diaz, this would be BJ's first fights back in the UFC after a lengthy layoff. Baby Jay and Diaz fought to a decision in the fight of the night at UFC 137 for the shot at the Welterweight championship. While both are in the midst of a losing streak, this would be a fight no one could deny their excitement for.
4. Michael "Venom" Page I know Page is under contract with Bellator, and Diaz with the UFC, but that doesn't stop one from wondering what would happen if these two clashed. Scott Coker's Bellator golden boy, who boasts several highlight reel finishes, against Coker's Strikeforce golden boy and Welterweight Champion. The rivalry writes itself, and the fight has the potential to be a classic.
5. Sage Northcutt TELL ME YOU DONT WANT TO SEE THIS!? The UFC's young top prospect and a promotor's dream in Northcutt facing off against the veteran anti-establishment bad boy in Diaz. Northcutt is a talented but unproven young fighter, and a win against Diaz could instantly shoot him into a higher tier in the promotion. Meanwhile, such a fight would benefit Diaz by giving him a winnable fight against a decent current draw. I would also look forward to the ridiculous trash talk, not to mention the Twitter jokes.
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