By Raphael Garcia
In a weird and twisted sort of way, the Diaz brothers are the mixed martial arts version of the Manning brothers. Just as Peyton and Eli Manning have created many different story lines for NFL fans to enjoy during their ups and downs, Nick and Nate Diaz continue to do the same in MMA. When looking at the pair of Stockton natives and their entire mystique, it’s very difficult not to find something to love. Nate’s victory in the main event of UFC 196 is yet another moment that left fans shaking their head in amazement at what the Diaz brothers have been able to do. Win or lose, Nick and Nate consistently create “must watch” television or headlines that show why MMA is such a unique sport.
In a sport in which personality is becoming cachet, Nick and Nate have been at it since before anyone was paying attention. Anytime a microphone or camera is set up in front of a Diaz brother, the fans immediately take notice, simply because no one ever knows exactly what is going to happen. After Joe Rogan asked the first question to Nate after his submission of Conor McGregor, he didn’t let the world down with his simple answer: “I’m not surprised, motherf*ckers.” Rogan and the entire MMA world could only laugh.
Perhaps it is their unwillingness to conform. Nick and Nate have both spent time in the doghouse with UFC executives. They are two fighters who look out for their own best interests rather than putting the UFC brand first. Even though Nate stepped up to take this fight on extremely short notice that was due to the fact that this was a major opportunity. Stopping McGregor allowed him to earn $100K in bonuses on top of his still-undisclosed fight purse. Nick’s dislike of media obligations forced the UFC to pull him out of UFC 137, but when he eventually fought against Georges St-Pierre at UFC 158, he built himself into such a draw that the card brought in nearly one million pay-per-view buys. And this was coming off of a loss.
• Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz: Nate Diaz def. Conor McGregor via submission (rear-naked choke) at 4:12 of Round 2.
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