Abracadabra, disappear! And just like that, poof, former UFC lightweight top contender Nate Diaz (pictured) has been removed from the official UFC Fighter Rankings.
The UFC released their most updated rankings Tuesday. Considering the promotion didn’t host an event this past weekend, there wasn’t expected to be any significant changes in each division’s pecking order.
However, despite scoring a #6 rating in the lightweight class just last week, Diaz has been inexplicably erased from the list.
Diaz is victorious in one of his past three scraps, but is coming off November’s highlight reel TKO win over Gray Maynard, who happens to be currently ranked #8. Jorge Masvidal and Joe Lauzon weren’t rated last week, but cracked the Top 15 today.
The other lightweight that was removed was TJ Grant, who was ranked #3 just seven days ago. Grant has rattled off five straight wins, but hasn’t been seen since last May due to lingering concussion issues.
That might explain why Grant was omitted from the list of available fighters media members can vote for when considering their picks. On the flipside, Grant hasn’t even been inactive for a complete year and former bantamweight champ Dominick Cruz, who has been sidelined for over two-and-a-half years with various injuries, is still ranked #9 in his division.
As for Diaz, it’s possible the UFC is retaliating because the Stockton slugger hasn’t been shy about expressing his displeasure in his contract situation. It could also be the UFC’s attempt to tick off Diaz and motivate him to return to action, STAT.
In addition to Maynard, Diaz also holds wins over Donald Cerrone and Jim Miller. They are currently ranked #5 and #7, respectively.
A UFC official told reporter Ariel Helwani that the organization labels fighters as either “active” and “deactivated.” Apparently, Diaz and Grant are presently considered deactivated, thus ineligible to be ranked.
Here are the current UFC Lightweight Fighter Rankings:
Champion: Anthony Pettis
1. Gilbert Melendez
2. Benson Henderson
3. Josh Thomson (+1)
4. Khabib Nurmagomedov (+1)
5. Donald Cerrone (+2)
6. Rafael dos Anjos (+2)
7. Jim Miller (+2)
8. Gray Maynard (+2)
9. Myles Jury (+2)
10. Michael Johnson (+2)
11. Edson Barboza (+2)
12. Bobby Green (+2)
13. Rustam Khabilov (+2)
14. Jorge Masvidal (NR)
15. Joe Lauzon (NR)