Conor McGregor to fight Nate Diaz at UFC 196

By The Sports Xchange   |   Feb. 25, 2016 at 1:55 AM
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Conor McGregor will move up two weight classes to take on Nate Diaz in a welterweight fight at UFC 196 on March 5 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

McGregor, the UFC featherweight weight champion, will fight in the 170-pound division after his scheduled bout against 155-pound champion Rafael dos Anjos was called off when dos Anjos withdrew Wednesday because of a broken foot.

McGregor-Diaz will be the headliner at the pay-for-view UFC 196 event, but it will be a non-title fight. McGregor's matchup with dos Anjos was to be for the welterweight title.

The 27-year-old McGregor knocked out former champion Jose Aldo in 13 seconds on Dec. 19 to boost his record to 7-0 in UFC with six knockouts. If the Irishman would have fought dos Anjos next week and won, he would have become the first UFC fighter to hold championships in two divisions simultaneously.

Diaz, a Californian, is a lightweight, but because of the short notice before the upcoming bout, it was agreed upon to fight at 170 pounds rather than 155. McGregor has never fought as a welterweight and Diaz is 2-2.

"A lot of guys wanted this fight," UFC promoter Dana White said, "but we ended up with Nate Diaz. We felt this was the fight to make and the fight the fans wanted to see."

Also on the UFC 196 card, women's bantamweight champion Holly Holm will take on Miesha Tate in her first title defense since knocking out Ronda Rousey in November in Australia.

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