On Saturday, manager Kevin Mubenga told ESPN that Diaz won’t be facing Chimaev in his UFC comeback fight.
“He’s a good prospect, respectfully, but he hasn’t earned the right to a mega-fight vs. Nick Diaz,” Mubenga said. “So let’s put those rumors to rest.”
Mubenga added that the Diaz team’s focus remains on Nate Diaz, who is preparing for a five-round welterweight co-main event vs. Leon Edwards on May 15 at UFC 262. Any decision on Nick’s fight won’t come until afterward.
“Nate’s up first; our focus is on that,” Mubenga said. “We will narrow down more deserving opponents (for Nick) after the fight.”
According to BJPenn.com, Diaz (26-9 MMA, 7-6 UFC) was formally offered Chimaev (9-0 MMA, 3-0 UFC) as an opponent. That report came on the heels of Chimaev telling MMA Junkie he would like to fight Diaz.
Nick Diaz, 37, hasn’t competed since Jan. 31, 2015, originally a loss to Anderson Silva that was later overturned to a no contest. Diaz attended last Saturday’s UFC 261 in Jacksonville, Fla., which caused a stir about a possible return to the octagon. After the event, UFC president Dana White said he would meet Diaz with the intention of giving Diaz another shot.
It’s unclear what was discussed, but if Chimaev’s name did come up, forget about it now.
Prior to the Silva fight, Diaz, a former Strikeforce welterweight champion, lost to Carlos Condit and Georges St-Pierre, which snapped an 11-fight winning streak between May 2008 and October 2011.