(“All I’m saying is, what if Ned Stark and Robert Baratheon are homos? Kinda changes the whole dynamic and sh*t.” / Photo via Getty)
So here’s one more example of the funny things that can happen when a fight promotion organizes its own ranking system, rather than relying on an independent body. This morning, #5-ranked lightweight Nate Diaz was unceremoniously removed from the UFC Rankings page, with no explanation given — although the fact that Diaz has been publicly feuding with the UFC over money lately can’t be a coincidence.
According to UFC.com/rankings, “A fighter is only eligible to be voted on if they are in active status in the UFC.” This could help explain why TJ Grant was also suddenly bounced from the rankings page yesterday; he’s been out of commission for nearly a year due to lingering concussion symptoms, and he still hasn’t booked his return fight yet. Diaz, on the other hand, is less than six months removed from his first-round TKO of Gray Maynard at the TUF 18 Finale.
The only reason Diaz would lose his “active status” is if he was fired, and there’s no indication that he has been. It’s apparently just a case of the UFC saying, “We don’t like you anymore, so we don’t think you should be ranked.” (See also: “We don’t like you anymore, so we don’t think you should be a Hall of Famer.”)
Ultimately, it doesn’t matter because the rankings have no bearings on which fights get made, or who’s in line for a title shot, and the fighters themselves are starting to recognize how meaningless they are. It’s just a petty, childish move intended to devalue Diaz and communicate how disposable he is to the company. Combat sports entertainment, ladies and gentlemen.