Anthony Pettis recently stated that he respects former opponent Nate Diaz for taking on the toughest fighters possible.
Speaking to Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, Pettis discussed several topics. They include his successes with MMA gambling, being on the final season of his PFL contract, and more.
In regards to Diaz being on the last fight of his UFC contract and clashing with unbeaten Khamzat Chimaev in the fall, Pettis said:
“Man, that is crazy. I respect Diaz though. Now that we’ve fought. Obviously we had our beef coming up but I respect him. He’s a fighters’ fighter. He’s not afraid to take the risk. He always says it, he’s like there’s no real fighters left in MMA. When I fought, I fought everybody. I was coming off of a loss to (Tony) Ferguson and fought Wonderboy.”
Anthony Pettis continued:
“That doesn’t really happen right now. There’s more businessmen in MMA now. It’s kind of like not becoming boxing but it’s more politics involved. They’re trying to build guys up. Where Diaz is like yo, give me the next best guy in line. I respect that.”
Watch the interview/video below:
Anthony Pettis and Nate Diaz clashed in August 2019 with Diaz emerging victorious by unanimous decision at UFC 241.
As aforementioned, Diaz is next preparing to fight Khamzat Chimaev and that transpires in the pay-per-view main event of UFC 279 on September 10.
Anthony Pettis’ PFL 2022 run
Pettis’ 2021 PFL season saw him suffer back-to-back defeats to Clay Collard and Raush Manfio. He was looking to make a fresh start this calendar year.
Pettis did just that with a first-round finish of Myles Price in May that garnered him enough points to punch his ticket to the playoffs stage.
This Price win was what created the dynamic for Pettis, where he would instantly rematch someone he lost to in the regular season for his first playoffs bout.
‘Showtime’ lost to Stevie Ray on June 24 by way of a modified twister in the second round. Meanwhile, Pettis vs. Ray II goes down on August 5 in the main event of PFL 7 which kicks off the 2022 playoffs.
The former WEC and UFC lightweight champion will be looking to even up the series with Ray. However, he is also eyeballing becoming a world champion in yet another promotion.