Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor . Photo by Vince Cachero/MMAnytt

Nate Diaz’s coach says he deserves ‘at least $30 million’ for Conor McGregor trilogy

If Nate Diaz is going to be Conor McGregor‘s next opponent, the UFC is going to have to pony up a lot of money.

That’s the word from Diaz’s longtime boxing coach Richard Perez, who says that the UFC is making money hand over fist compared to the fighters and he believes the former lightweight title contender deserves a much bigger piece of the pie if he’s going to face McGregor again.

Diaz currently holds the only win over McGregor in the UFC after he tapped out the Irishman with a second round rear naked choke last March. McGregor got his revenge several months later at UFC 202 when he earned a majority decision over Diaz to notch the rivalry at one win a piece.

McGregor has already mentioned Diaz as a possible opponent for his UFC return after boxing Floyd Mayweather, but it appears the UFC will have to offer up a lot more money to get those two fighters in the cage together.

“At least $20 million, $30 million,” Perez told Submission Radio when asked how much Diaz should make for the trilogy fight. “Come on. UFC’s making a whole lot of money, a whole lot of money and they’re pocketing it. They’re giving more to McGregor, so it’s not fair because it takes two in that ring to draw a crowd — I mean, a good two fighters. It’s just like Mayweather when he fought [Andre] Berto. It was not even sold out at all. It was embarrassing. It’s because that guy couldn’t draw a crowd.

“See, that’s what I’m saying, it’s the fighters that draw the crowd, and Nathan and McGregor, third one would be outstanding. Everyone knows that. So he needs to get paid at least $30 million easy.”

For reference sake, Diaz made a disclosed $2 million payday for his rematch with McGregor this past August.


While his coach stuck to his guns about Diaz making more than 10 times that amount for a third fight with McGregor, Perez also believes that if his fighter is healthy for the trilogy then there’s no way he’s not walking out victorious.

Diaz beat McGregor on 10 days notice the first time they fought and reportedly he was suffering through an injury ahead of the rematch. That’s why Perez believes a fully healthy and prepared Diaz makes easy work out of McGregor in a third fight.

“If Nathan goes through training camp with no injuries, McGregor’s not gonna have a chance,” Perez said. “I’ll tell you that right now. If you watch some of the fights, like when Nathan fought [Donald] “Cowboy” Cerrone and some other guys, he was in tip-top shape, he wasn’t injured or anything, he went out there and did it, he boxed them. And when he’s in tip-top shape, he can box. I mean, they think McGregor can box, Nathan can box. Right now in the last two fights he fought him, the first time was 11-day notice, so it wasn’t enough time but it was enough time to get a win. Second time he got injured so he had to lay back, so it put him back as far as being in shape and being accurate in timing. And people were thinking, “oh, he’s gonna come back and be better,” no, they don’t see the outcome of it, the true outcome of what happened. It’s like any fighter.

You know, like Pacquiao. He had a rotator cuff that was messed up. He fought Mayweather, it went the distance, but he lost and that’s what I’m saying. These guys are true warriors, they go out there and still fight. So as far as McGregor coming out in the cage if he fights Nathan and Nathan gets in shape, it should be a good fight, a great fight, because Nathan can move and he’s got great footwork and he can throw a lot of combinations and make McGregor miss, counter off of it, use his reach.”

If Diaz truly has a $30 million asking price for the fight, it’s tough to imagine the UFC coming to an agreement on a third bout with McGregor but anything is possible. It’s likely McGregor will also look to renegotiate his deal with the UFC now that he’s set to make more than $100 million for one fight after facing Mayweather this past weekend.

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Damon Martin is a veteran mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the industry since 2003 with bylines on FOX Sports, CNN, Bleacher Report and numerous other outlets.