The last Stockton Slap: Why we are hyped for the Nate Diaz fight
Fighting the last bout of his UFC contract this Saturday, we look back at the self-proclaimed Baddest Motherf-----’s legacy in and outside the octagon
Nate Diaz won the fifth season of the Ultimate Fighter in 2007 to earn a UFC contract. Since then, he’s provided MMA fans countless memories, such as upsetting Connor McGregor, introducing his signature Stockton Slap, and providing must-watch pressers.
It all finishes on Saturday night in Las Vegas. Diaz will face off against Khazmat Chimaev in his last UFC-contracted fight. Diaz has never ducked any fighters and has constantly fought the best of the best, and this time is no different. Chimaev, who has one of the fastest risings in UFC history, is ranked third in the same weight class.
Chimaev may be the scariest fighter at welterweight after he defeated top contender Gilbert Burns. But that doesn’t bother Diaz one bit–this is a dude whose face is covered in blood every fight, and was labeled the world’s baddest motherf****r. This isn’t your typical ride off into the sunset: Diaz’s last two UFC fights will be the welterweight champion and Chimaev, whose goal is to “smash everybody.”
Diaz is the betting underdog in this fight, but he’s been an underdog before, and a win over one of the best young UFC fighters would solidify his legacy. But even if Diaz goes down, UFC fans have plenty to remember him by.
Relive the time @NateDiaz209 pulled off the upset against Conor McGregor 😤 #UFC279 pic.twitter.com/1vd2lsXTBK
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) September 8, 2022
Nate Diaz is the epitome of MMA
Diaz is a pioneer of MMA. Before the sell-out crowds, record PPV buys, and ESPN deals, MMA was shunned in the mainstream. The Stockton native, along with his brother Nick Diaz, both helped bring it near the top of the sports landscape.
Part of the reason fans love Diaz is that he’s real. UFC has bleeped out his interviews countless times and he doesn’t sugarcoat anything. He’ll tell you straight up how he feels, and don’t be shocked if he holds up both middle fingers up the camera this weekend.
Diaz will spark up a joint in a press conference, just like if he’d be in his living room. The man is a living legend.
The southpaw never became a champion or went on a crazy undefeated streak, but that doesn’t matter to MMA fans like myself. What mattered was if you tuned into a Nate Diaz fight, you knew you would get a show. The man is a menace in and out of the octagon, and MMA fans love that. Even if you’re not into combat sports, watch a compilation of his pressers against McGregor and you’ll find yourself entertained.
Diaz is the epitome of MMA, battling until he can’t anymore. Stepping in the octagon and being prepared for war. A part of MMA will leave the sport on Saturday, as Diaz leaves one of the most significant legacies that can not be recreated.
Leaving, but not forgotten
Unfortunately for most other fighters, just about anyone who fights Nate Diaz becomes the bad guy. Even if Diaz gets dominated in this fight but gives us one last Stockton slap, middle finger, or f-bomb, we will leave happy.
But now fans will be eager to see what comes next, whether with his promotion of Real Fight INC, a potential boxing match with Jake Paul, or maybe even the movie business. Whatever it is, Diaz has left his mark on MMA and on behalf of all of us. Thank you.