It’s only been six months since Anderson Silva suffered a horrific broken leg in the second round of his rematch with UFC middleweight champion Chris Weidman at UFC 168, yet already the buzz surrounding his return is well underway. The name at top of the list of potential opponents for Silva’s return is none other than Nick Diaz.

There are plenty of reasons why the UFC should not make this fight. For one, Diaz is “retired” and has not fought since March 2013. More importantly, though, is the fact that Diaz is much smaller than Silva and has spent the majority of his career at welterweight. However, that doesn’t matter, because this is a blockbuster match-up that fight fans would come out in droves to see.

Say what you will about Diaz—and I have been very critical of him in the past—but he is a great fighter whose style makes for great fights. He is a tremendous boxer and, of course, his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu is out of this world.

You could argue that Diaz doesn’t deserve a fight against Silva. After all, he lost his last two outings before walking away from the sport. Yet, this fight wouldn’t be about a No. 1 contendership anyway—remember, Silva is coming off consecutive losses, just like Diaz. It would simply be a great stylistic match-up that fans and fighters everywhere could get behind.

Although Silva is one of the greatest strikers to ever compete in the UFC, Diaz is no slouch on the feet. Diaz is arguably one of the best boxers in sport. He would be able to hold his own and make things interesting against the former UFC champion, even though he doesn’t have the varied striking attack Silva has. Furthermore, if this fight were to go to the ground, I suspect we would see a brilliant display of high-level BJJ.

For Silva, this would be a great comeback fight. That’s not just because it would sell a lot of tickets, but because it would be a great test to see whether or not he can still compete with the sport’s elite. If Silva could do to Diaz what he has done to so many elite fighters over the course of his career, we would all know that he is truly back and remains a force to be reckoned with. If he were to lose, we would know that his time atop the sport is really over.

There is a lot of work that still needs to get done in order for this fight to happen, so don’t get too excited just yet. However, both fighters have expressed interest in the match-up, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility. If the UFC can make the numbers right to entice Diaz back to the cage, there is a very good chance we could be seeing these two mix it up.

Given where Silva is in his recovery, this fight, if it were to happen, would likely take place during the UFC’s annual Super Bowl weekend fight card. It would easily be the biggest non-title fight of the year. Better yet for the UFC and its fans, this would be a non-title fight the promotion could bill as the main event without anyone batting an eye. For the UFC, this fight makes all the sense in the world. And it’s doubtful that you’ll hear the fans complain either.

About The Author

RJ Gardner
Content Coordinator

RJ Gardner is a rabid sports fan and a long time MMA enthusiast. After watching UFC 1 at ripe old age of 11 RJ was hooked and his passion for the sport has continued to blossom over the years. RJ has been covering MMA since 2007 and has had work featured on Bleacher Report, SI.com, CBSSports.com and UFC.com. RJ is also a Petroleum Transportation Operations Manager during the day.