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Dana White says Nick Diaz ‘looked damn good’ in long-awaited UFC return despite quitting in Robbie Lawler rematch

UFC boss Dana White was blown away by Nick Diaz’s performance in his long-awaited return to the octagon. The former Strikeforce welterweight champion returned to the cage last weekend at UFC 266 for a rematch with fellow fan favourite Robbie Lawler. Diaz, 38, showed glimpses of his old self but it was clear his six-year […] ...

UFC boss Dana White was blown away by Nick Diaz’s performance in his long-awaited return to the octagon.

The former Strikeforce welterweight champion returned to the cage last weekend at UFC 266 for a rematch with fellow fan favourite Robbie Lawler.

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Nick Diaz returned to the octagon last weekend against Robbie Lawler[/caption]

But the fan favourite ended up suffering a third-round TKO loss to Robbie Lawler
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UFC chief Dana White was nonetheless impressed by Diaz’s display in his comeback bout[/caption]

Diaz, 38, showed glimpses of his old self but it was clear his six-year hiatus had a detrimental effect on his skills.

The Stockton slugger ended up suffering a third-round TKO defeat to Ruthless, but White was nonetheless impressed by his display.

He said: “I thought Nick Diaz looked incredible considering he hasn’t fought in five [six] years.

“I don’t know what I was expecting. You never know what to get with the [Diaz] brothers, but let me tell you what — with a five-year layoff, I thought he looked unbelievable.

“And I don’t know if you guys saw Robbie after the fight, but Robbie had freaking knots and lumps all over him. Those two went to war.

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“I thought Robbie was just going to go out there and buzz-saw through him — and that was not the case.”

Like the rest of the world, White is unsure of whether Diaz’s ill-fated rematch with Lawler will be his final outing to the octagon.

When asked about the elder Diaz brother’s next move, he said: “I don’t know.

“I honestly don’t know the answer to that question, but he looked damn good.

“That kid’s got a massive heart, he’s obviously super talented fighter, and yeah, I was impressed.”

I thought Nick Diaz looked incredible considering he hasn’t fought in five years

Dana White on Nick Diaz

Diaz’s post-fight interview did little to answer MMA fans’ lingering questions about his future.

He told UFC commentator Daniel Cormier: “I’m glad I at least put on a show.

“I knew I had it coming, Old Rob. I had a lot of stress coming into this one, especially being off for a long time.

“I don’t have no excuses. I had a long time off and I knew I had it coming.

“I don’t know how this fight got set up.

“I had a switch-up in my whole management set-up and the way the fight got set up.

“It was just a bum wrap. But no excuses. I had it coming. He was in great shape.”


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