Nate Diaz close to signing new UFC deal, manager wants title fight in December

Posted: August 7, 2012 in Uncategorized
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Manager Cesar Gracie met on Monday with UFC president Dana White to hammer out a new deal with Nate Diaz (16-7 MMA, 11-5 UFC) and discuss the future of his brother, Nick Diaz (27-8 MMA, 7-5 UFC).

Although White on Monday tweeted that a new deal was done for Diaz, who had one fight remaining on his previous contract, Gracie today told ( that the sides haven’t agreed on a number of fights.

“We agreed with the principles of it,” he said. “Usually, we do four-fight deals, and they want a longer contract.”

Diaz is currently the No. 1 contender in the UFC lightweight division after submitting Jim Miller in the main event of UFC on FOX 3. Instead of take an interim fight, the Stockton, Calif., native elected to wait for the winner of Saturday’s title bout between champ Benson Henderson and Frankie Edgar at UFC 150.

The date of Diaz’s title shot won’t be set until after that fight. But Gracie said he’d like to see it happen at the end of the year.

“Best-case scenario would probably be it happening in December,” he said. “But it depends. Frankie Edgar gets hurt a lot. A guy like Ben Henderson, he’s such an athlete, and that guy is more sturdy, and he wants to get back in there.

“So if Henderson were to win, and he’s relatively healthy, we’re looking at the end of the year.”

In the meantime, Diaz has busied himself helping Jake Shields prepare for a fight with Ed Herman at UFC 150. Additionally, he has served as a sparring partner for boxing champ Andre Ward as he prepares to fight fellow champ Chad Dawson on Sept. 8.

“They need a southpaw the right size with the right aggression, and they’re using Nate a lot for that,” Gracie said. “He’s boxing with Andre three times a week, and he’s helping the other guys get ready, so he’s staying pretty active.”

With Nate Diaz’s future apparently set, Gracie also spoke with the UFC about Nick Diaz, who remains under suspension with the Nevada State Athletic Commission following a second positive drug test for marijuana.

Gracie said that unless Diaz is able to free himself of the suspension, he will remain on the shelf until its term is up.

Gracie said Diaz’s suspension has been appealed to a higher court by lawyer Ross Goodman, who represented the fighter in an earlier appeal that resulted in a proposed 12-month suspension being upheld.

“Theoretically, if a judge says he’ll look at it and it will take a couple of months, he could put a stay on the suspension,” Gracie said. “And at that point, Nick would be more than free to fight. But that’s an if.”

Both Diaz brothers, however, should be under the UFC’s roof for the foreseeable future.

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