The past six months haven’t exactly been kind to UFC lightweight Nate Diaz. The Stockton native was thoroughly dominated during his first title fight in the Ultimate Fighting Championship against Benson Henderson last December, and he wasn’t able to get back to his winning ways when he welcomed Strikeforce import Josh Thomson back into the promotion a month ago at UFC on Fox 7.
To make things worse, Diaz ended up getting into trouble when he voiced his opinion on Pat Healy testing positive for marijuana metabolites after his impressive UFC 159 win against Jim Miller and how the Ultimate Fighting Championship, New Jersey State Athletic Control Board, and most importantly, Bryan Caraway — who ended up receiving an extra $65,000 and the event’s Submission of the Night award which was initially given to Healy — handled the situation.
The main problem with Diaz’ comments was the fact he decided to use a gay slur while voicing his opinion about Caraway.
The UFC decided to make an example out of Diaz, quickly issuing a $20,000 fine and 90-day suspension for what its brass calls a violation of its code of conduct.
Pretty steep punishment considering the fact Diaz only received $15,000 in disclosed payments for his efforts at UFC on Fox 7.
However, Diaz remains defiant, and his manager, Mike Kogan, explained their stance during the May 20 episode of the “MMA Hour.”
“Nate doesn’t feel remorse for what he said,” Kogan stated. “I don’t feel remorse for what he said. I don’t feel remorse for defending what he said or elaborating on what he said. Because it was not a homophobic statement. It was not intended to offend homosexuals.”
As far as Kogan is concerned, Diaz’ statements didn’t have anything to do with anyone else besides Caraway who took unnecessary cheap shots at Healy for failing his post-fight drug test.
“Did anybody ask Bryan Caraway about his stance on marijuana? No,” Kogan explained. “Nobody asked Bryan Caraway anything. They just gave him the damn money because he was chasing after Dana all over Twitter begging for the [expletive] bonus. Just take your money and go away.”
While Nate Diaz wasn’t targeting homosexuals, there simply aren’t any valid excuses for using the word he used to describe Bryan. Sure, you can argue about how the word has many uses (it’s a British slang for cigarettes for example), but the reality is, when many people hear that word their minds shifts towards homosexuals, and the way Diaz used it assumes being gay is a bad thing.
It wouldn’t be an insult without that assumption.
That doesn’t mean I’m going to let the UFC ‘s brass get away so easily with their overwhelming hypocrisy.
UFC president Dana White used the same word during a rant against reporter Loretta Hunt a while back, Joe Rogan — who doesn’t appear to be homophobic in any way — has gotten into trouble in the past for using the word one too many times, and Michael Bisping yelled it at Jorge Rivera during the final staredown prior to their UFC 127 fight, while White — who was right in the mix of things — grinned from ear to ear as the crowd ate up the intense weigh-in.
Heck, Caraway threatened to knock women’s bantamweight champion Ronda Rousey’s teeth “down her throat” and “break her arm,” yet I don’t recall the UFC coming down with any stern disciplinary action.
To now fine Diaz more than his previous fight’s disclosed earnings for using the same word others have used without any consequences in the past just seems wrong. Not saying there shouldn’t be some sort of reprimand, but rather, that the UFC clearly went overboard with the punishment handed to Diaz.