UFC Welterweight Champion Tyron Woodley is eyeing a money fight against Nate Diaz, who has become a superstar in the UFC after defeating Conor McGregor at UFC 196.
However, Diaz (19-11) hasn’t fought since August 2016, when he suffered a majority decision loss to the Irishman in their second fight.
Woodley, on the other hand, thinks that he will be next in line to fight the Stockton native.
He said, “I think that fight will happen, I think it will happen this year. I think it’s way more likely than people realize. There are conversations about Nate and I fighting in July. The UFC has offered Nate that fight. They just have to make it worth his while.”
“I think I’ll fight Nate this year, and I think it will be my return to the Octagon. If I had to bet the house on it, that’s my next opponent.”
“In four weeks? No. I wouldn’t fight him,” Woodley said. “If we’re fighting, I’m pretty sure it would have to be for my belt. Now, if they want me to fight him at a catchweight, not a title fight, I’m gonna have to drop to my knees and make a prayer to the highest for something like that.”
“At this point in my career, if it’s a fight that’s not for my belt, I’m willing to step out of the box and do some different things.”
“Do I think Nate will fight me? Yes, for the right amount of money and the right time in history, I do,” Woodley said. “Is it a good fight for him? No. I’m a lot faster. I punch a lot harder. I can take him down. He’s not going to submit me. That said, it’s not a good fight for him. So, they have to make it up to him in dollars and cents.”
“I just want to do something that’s going to push me forward career-wise or push my legacy,” Woodley said. “I need both. I need super fights and I need to continue to knock off these rising contenders. I’ve been fighting the best of the best since Strikeforce. It’s not like I’m asking for anything that I haven’t paid my dues for. I had to earn this position the hard way.”
The 32-year-old former Ultimate Fighter winner and the 35-year-old champion could potentially headline a bout at UFC 226 on July 7. The Stipe Miocic-Daniel Cormier champion-vs-champion bout is already on that card, so it’s unclear which fight would be the main event.