The UFC has been having a bit of a hard time lately with the consistency of their pay per view events. While there are stacked cards like UFC 205 and 207, there are also undeniably thin cards like UFC 206 and 208. UFC 209 on March 4th definitely falls into the stacked category for those who know. It features a rematch between Tyron Woodley and Stephen ‘Wonderboy’ Thompson for the welterweight strap, and a fight between #1 and #2 contenders Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson for an interim lightweight title.
But one thing curiously lacking from UFC 209 is the Diaz brothers. Nick and Nate come from Stockton, California and have been repping the region since they started fighting, making 209 their unofficial catchphrase. Not having either of them on 209 is a shame. According to UFC commentator Joe Rogan, it’s bigger than that … it’s a missed opportunity for a massive money event.
“They had one opportunity ever in the history of the UFC to do it,” Rogan said in a recent podcast. “Like, I planned episode 911 [of the Joe Rogan Podcast] to be Alex Jones. They should have planned episode 209 to be in Stockton with Nick and Nate Diaz. I guarantee to you, that s**t would have gotten 2 million pay per view buys.”
The only problem with this plan is that the Diaz brothers, in addition to being huge draws, are also notoriously difficult to deal with. The UFC went ahead and pulled Nick Diaz from a massive fight with Georges St-Pierre back in 2011 for pulling a McGregor and skipping a press conference. And after Nate Diaz beat Conor McGregor at UFC 196, he put the screws to the UFC and forced a massive amount of money out of them (plus a slap upside Dana White’s head) to do a rematch.
In fact, it turns out Joe Rogan wasn’t the only one in the UFC that wanted at least one Diaz on UFC 209. According to Dana White, he tried to book both brothers but they’re currently “the hardest fighters on the roster to book.” Nate Diaz has said he won’t even answer the phone for less than 20 million, and we assume Nick Diaz is also sitting patiently on the sidelines waiting for the perfect money fight (cough Georges St-Pierre rematch cough).
With all those Diaz factors in play, it’s no surprise the UFC couldn’t get them to play along for a big Diaz 209 event. We agree with Joe, though … it sure would have been cool. And huge.