Diaz vs. Maynard rubber match booked

Nate Diaz and Gray Maynard are two of the most distinguished

alumni of

target="_blank">The Ultimate Fighter. Both men, ironically both

contestants of Season 5, have had long and successful careers and

earned lightweight title shots. Their paths have also crossed twice

before in the Octagon, once on the show and once in official

competition, each winning once.

At the TUF 18 Finale, they’ll pair off again in the rubber

match, the UFC announced on Sunday.

Diaz won TUF in season five, defeating Maynard on the way to the

championship, choking him out with a guillotine in the semifinal

round. Less than three years later, they met again, this time in

the main event of a UFC show in Virginia. In that one, Maynard

squeezed out a split-decision, one of eight consecutive victories

that eventually earned him an opportunity to fight for the


Despite two cracks against Frankie Edgar, Maynard fell short.

Later, Diaz (16-9) also put together his own title run, losing to

Benson Henderson in Dec. 2012.

Both fighters will be looking to rebound from the loss


Maynard (11-2-1, 1 no contest) was upset in his last fight,

KO’d by T.J. Grant at UFC 160. Diaz, meanwhile, has dropped

two straight. In addition to the aforementioned loss to Henderson,

he suffered his first career TKO loss, losing to Josh Thomson.

The bout is the first one official for the Nov. 30 show, which

is also expected to host the Team Rousey vs. Team Tate men’s

and women’s finals and take place at the Mandalay Bay Events

Center in Las Vegas.