Nate Diaz is a mystical ninja liable to jump out of any number of trees you might walk past today, so he has the kind of folk hero status that transcends mere wins and losses. The essence of that mythic status was distilled into the BMF championship belt fashioned for his main event showdown with Jorge Masvidal at UFC 244; unfortunately, it all ended in a defeat via highly questionable doctor stoppage. To say the conclusion was premature is an understatement.
Despite the L, it's clear that fight fans will be impatiently awaiting Nate Diaz's next fight, because the guy basically lost zero clout here. And while running back the BMF bout is an intriguing option, that's far from the only possibility the UFC needs to consider.
1. Completing the Conor McGregor Trilogy
Well, sure. But at this point, does Conor really want that Nick Diaz Army smoke? As Masvidal noted late Saturday night, the Notorious MMA fights old men in bars because those are the bouts he knows he can win. He was clearly running away from contact at the end of their second fight, so Nasty Nate has to like his chances a third time around.
2. Robbie Lawler
Like Diaz, Robbie Lawler has been around the block, he'll be remembered for a long time, and he's not in the legitimate mix for a welterweight title. This fight would be a fun co-main event on a pay-per-view between two guys who have seen it all.
3. Jorge Masvidal BMF Rematch
It's tempting in many ways, but UFC 244's headliner did feel a lot like a one-off affair. Dana White and Co. aren't likely to want to parade around the BMF belt indefinitely, and it's not like The Rock is available at the drop of a hat. This thing ended way too abruptly for satisfaction, but you can bet Masvidal will be strongly prioritizing a 170-pound title shot against the Kamaru Usman-Colby Covington winner.
4. Leon Edwards
SOMEONE has to fight Leon Edwards! Seriously, this guy is the loneliest man in the world. He appeared to be on a collision course with Masvidal before the BMF train gained steam. If he can't cook something up with a guy like Tyron Woodley, he ought to be open to a clash with Diaz.