Diaz is coming off of a loss for the UFC lightweight title against Benson Henderson who is also defending his belt in the main event of the same card. Interestingly enough, Melendez is fighting Henderson in the main event. For the Cesar Gracie Jiu Jitsu trained fighter, the bout pitts him against a competitor with which his fight team is very familiar. Diaz’s teammate Gilbert Melendez faced Thomson three times inside the Strikeforce hexagon.
The 34-year-old, Josh “The Real Punk” Thomson, comes into the bout having lost in a title fight against Melendez in May 2012. By the time he meets Diaz in the Octagon, it will have been almost a year since his last fight. This marks Thomson’s second stint in the UFC. He last was part of the promotion in 2004 and holds a 2-1 record inside the Octagon.
This fight card is very much shaping up to be a UFC vs Strikeforce affair. So far, Frank Mir vs Daniel Cormier, Benson Henderson vs Gilbert Melendez and now Nate Diaz vs Josh Thomson are all set for the card. Verbal agreements are also in place for Dan Hardy vs Matt Brown to square off in a welterweight battle.