Nick Diaz Close to Fighting Jorge Masvidal at UFC 235, per Dana White

Kyle Newport@@KyleNewportFeatured ColumnistNovember 16, 2018

LAS VEGAS, NV - JANUARY 31:  (R-L) Nick Diaz punches Anderson Silva of Brazil in their middleweight bout during the UFC 183 event at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on January 31, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Getty Images

The UFC is close to reaching a deal for Nick Diaz and Jorge Masvidal to square off at UFC 235 in Las Vegas on March 2, 2019, according to ESPN's Brett Okamoto.

If finalized, it will mark Diaz's first UFC fight in more than four years as he has not fought since Jan. 31, 2015.

Diaz had a no contest against Anderson Silva at UFC 183. He is on a three-fight winless streak dating back to Oct. 2011.

Back in September 2015, Diaz was suspended five years and fined $165,000 by the Nevada State Athletic Commission because of multiple failed drug tests. That punishment was later appealed and reduced to 18 months and a $100,000 fine.

However, he was later suspended by the United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) retroactive to April 2017 for missing a trio of drug tests. He became eligible to return to the Octagon this past April.

Diaz, now 35, is 26-10-0 in his career. 

The news of a potential bout should not come as much of a surprise. Masvidal previously told Okamoto that he had been approached about a clash with Diaz and had approved of such a showdown:

"The UFC offered us Nick Diaz and obviously we said yes. I would have loved to fight Nate, too—just because those guys are studs, man. All will. They don't have the most skills in the division, but they have maybe the most will. You can beat the s--t out of them—pain, fatigue—it doesn't matter. And I've got a lot of those same qualities. My fan base knows I'm going in there to die trying."

Now, it appears as though the UFC has found a date and event to showcase the fight.

Masvidal (32-13-0) has not fought since UFC 217 in November 2017, and he has not won since UFC on Fox 23 in January 2017.