His first endeavor outside the UFC was made public earlier this year after the Stockton star’s future outside the organization remained a heated subject. Jake Paul, a former YouTuber turned boxer, will face off against Diaz in the ring on August 5 at a DAZN pay-per-view event scheduled for Dallas’ American Airlines Center.
Paul has previously demanded that Diaz fight him in the cage under the auspices of the Professional Fighters League (PFL), despite the fact that the two have agreed to only engage in one fight in the squared circle. The 26-year-old native of Cleveland joined with the promotion in January of last year.
However, given Diaz’s insistence that his return to mixed martial arts will occur at just one location, that seems improbable.
Paul and Diaz held a press conference on Tuesday in preparation for their fight this summer in Texas. The Stockton native discussed his prospects for continued success in the sport that made him famous while responding to questions from reporters at the event.
A future return to the Octagon for the beloved former UFC fighter would not only be desirable, but it would also represent the only MMA promotional banner he would be willing to fight under.
“That’s an option, the UFC. Ideally, I wanna go back and fight for a world title. If not, I’m gonna have to make my own world title and make the best come to me. But I would like to be back in the UFC… No (possibility of joining the PFL or ONE Championship). Right now, the UFC’s got the best MMA fighters in the world, and have for years. I’m trying to fight the best.”
Diaz has ring business to take care of before considering a potential UFC comeback, which many have believed could take the shape of a long-awaited trilogy showdown with former two-division champion Conor McGregor.
Although Diaz and Paul have verbally sparred in the past, their most recent news conference was fairly cordial and uneventful. Closer to fight night, it remains to be seen whether that pattern will hold.
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