Nate Diaz’s return to the Octagon against Leon Edwards will transpire a month later than originally planned.
Their five-round tilt was due to take place in Houston, Texas at UFC 262 on 15 May, but will take place at UFC 263 in Glendale, Arizona on 12 June.
As first reported by Yahoo Sports’ Kevin Iole, this move was taken after Diaz suffered an undisclosed “minor” injury in training
Nate Diaz v Leon Edwards on June 12. Diaz has a minor injury but will be back in Glendale, Arizona
— Kevin Iole (@KevinI) May 4, 2021
UFC 263 already has two title fights booked. In the headliner, Israel Adesanya will seek to defend his UFC middleweight strap against Italy’s Marvin Vettori in a rematch. The fight before sees Deiveson Figueiredo and Brandon Moreno run it back for the UFC flyweight title after they fought to a draw at UFC 256 last December.
It’s expected that Diaz – Edwards will remain a five-round non-title, non-main event fight – the first of its kind in UFC history.
Diaz hasn’t competed in the Octagon since losing to Jorge Masvidal in their “BMF” title bout at UFC 244 in November, 2019. A fan favourite, the Stockton, California native has only competed four times since 2016.
Edwards himself returned from a lengthy spell on the sidelines earlier this year, having a couple of fights against Tyron Woodley and Khamzat Chimaev cancelled for different reasons but both relating to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Rocky” took on Belal Muhammad on short notice at UFC Fight Night 187 in March, but that contest was stopped early in the second round following an accidental eye poke.
Edwards is unbeaten in his last nine UFC outings.