Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz confirmed for UFC 196
What started as a potentially disastrous situation ended up with a silver lining as the UFC announced that featherweight champion Conor McGregor will face Nate Diaz in the main event of UFC 196 (Saturday, March 5th) in what could best be described as a trash talking dream fight.
The fight will be at welterweight instead of lightweight, and will be five rounds. Here’s a look at the poster just released by UFC.
The 27-year-old McGregor was scheduled to face UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos in an attempt to become the first simultaneous dual-division UFC champion. However, RDA was forced to pull out of the fight due to a broken foot that will keep him on the shelf for a few months.
Several names were floated around as potential opponents for McGregor including Donald Cerrone who had retained the services of nutritionist Mike Dolce to help him prepare for the short notice fight. Twitter exploded Tuesday as all kinds of fighters threw their hat into the ring, but in order to make this a true PPV draw, there was only a few options that fit that bill.
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The 30-year-old Diaz (18-10) returned to action for the first time in a year, steamrolling through emerging lightweight Michael Johnson to win a dominating unanimous decision in December. Ironically, his last defeat was at the hands of RDA. He said he wants big fights and there’s none bigger these days than Conor McGregor.
The rest of the Las Vegas-based card remains intact with women’s bantamweight champion Holly Holm defending her title for the first time against Miesha Tate, along with our Tom Lawlor facing Corey Anderson.