Five of Nate Diaz’s biggest wins, including his victory over McGregor

From a victory over Conor McGregor to a trilogy decider against Gray Maynard, Nate Diaz has enjoyed plenty of iconic wins from his 34 UFC fights throughout his career.

If you asked an MMA fan a list of their favourite fighters, it'd be hard to find any list that doesn't include Nate Diaz.

Whether it's the California native's entertaining fight style, laid-back weed-smoking persona, or his back-and-forth with long-term rival Conor McGregor, Diaz is a star that has transcended the MMA landscape.

Despite all the theatrics in his feuds, Diaz has just as much talent inside the octagon, beating some of the best names in MMA. But who are his biggest wins during his 15-year UFC career?

Nate Diaz vs Conor McGregor

The aforementioned Conor McGregor may go down as the biggest scalp that Nate Diaz has claimed in his UFC career.

Diaz wasn't originally scheduled to be an opponent of McGregor's. However, after an injury to the lightweight champion Rafael Dos Anjos, Diaz stepped up on two-weeks notice to take on 'The Notorious'.

The fight was scheduled at welterweight - a weight class above lightweight - and one of the biggest fights in UFC history was created.

Come fight night, McGregor closed in as the -370 favourite, but it would be Diaz who'd get the biggest win of his career.

After a back-and-forth round one, Diaz managed to gain the advantage in the second. After tagging the Irishman on the feet, McGregor shot a desperation takedown on Diaz and it was game over.

The Gracie-trained jiu-jitsu specialist would sink in the rear-naked choke, and rocket himself into stardom with his infamous post-fight press conference.

"I'm not surprised mother f****rs".

Nate Diaz vs Gray Maynard

Arguably the second biggest win of Diaz's career was the final fight of his trilogy with Gray Maynard.

Both men were first acquainted on season five of The Ultimate Fighter. Nate Diaz for team Jens Pulver, while Maynard was a competitor for team BJ Penn.

The Ultimate Fighter would also be the home of the first matchup in the three-fight series between the two - Nate Diaz being victorious by submission.

Diaz himself would go on to win the series as a whole, beating Manny Gamburyan in the finale, before meeting Maynard again on the UFC roster.

Maynard vs Diaz 2 was set for January 11th, 2010. Gray Maynard would be on the winning side in the second bout, edging a split decision and setting up the inevitable finale that came in 2013.

Diaz would squash any doubts over the better fighter in the 2013 bout.

Fittingly taking place at The Ultimate Fighter finale, Diaz would finish Maynard via TKO in the opening round and lead the series 2-1.

Nate Diaz vs Donald Cerrone

Nate Diaz vs Donald Cerrone, UFC 2011

Both Nate Diaz and Donald 'Cowboy' Cerrone are UFC stalwarts.

They are praised as two of the most entertaining fighters on the roster for over a decade, and when the two met it would be Diaz who had his hand raised.

After some crisp striking from both men throughout the opening rounds, it would be 'jiu-jitsu specialist' Diaz who would surprise people by putting on a striking clinic against 'Cowboy'.

The fight would also be remembered for the third-round antics of Diaz. Stockton's favourite son would show Donald Cerrone the middle finger to commence round three and proceed to cruise to a dominant unanimous decision victory.

Nate Diaz vs Jim Miller

After Nate Diaz's impressive victory over Donald Cerrone, the UFC handed him another veteran for the fight after - Jim Miller.

However, this wasn't just a young-stud against veteran matchup, because whoever won would later face Benson Henderson for the lightweight title.

Jim Miller began the bout on the offensive, aggressively chasing the early takedowns to impose his dominant wrestling. But, yet again, Diaz would negate his opponent's attack and have his hand raised.

He would show off his Gracie-trained jiu-jitsu once again and lock up the Guillotine choke in round two, taking his win streak to three, and becoming the number one contender for the lightweight title.

Nate Diaz vs Manny Gamburyan

There's been plenty of victories in Nate Diaz's career that can be viewed as 'great'. However, in terms of importance, not many rank as high as the fight that earned Nate Diaz his contract with the UFC.

In season 5 of The Ultimate Fighter, Diaz faced Rob Emerson, Corey Hill, and Gray Maynard, winning three straight via submission.

This set up a finale with fellow Pulver teammate Manny Gamburyan.

Gamburyan secured a takedown early in the bout, dominating with his ground and pound from top control. However, chasing a takedown in the second, Gamburyan would injure his shoulder and the win would be given to Diaz.

Now it may not be his flashiest performance, but this victory would provide us with the Nate Diaz we know and love in the UFC today.

READ MORE: Five possible opponents for Conor McGregor, including Nate Diaz trilogy

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