Category Archives: Nate Diaz

UFC stars Nate Diaz and Leslie Smith being sued by management group

Nate Diaz and Leslie Smith’s former management group is taking the fighters to court for allegedly skipping out on commissions and conspiring with an attorney to break management agreements.

The Ballengee Group seeks over $1 million in damages, among other claims alleging fraud, negligent misrepresentation and tortious interference in a lawsuit filed Monday by the firm’s attorney in Dallas County (Texas) court.

News of Diaz’s legal trouble was first reported by, and MMAjunkie obtained a copy of the lawsuit, which also includes Smith and attorney Sam Awad.

Nate Diaz could not be reached for comment, and calls to Smith and Awad went unreturned.

The suit, filed by attorney Jason H. Friedman, claims Ballengee signed Nate Diaz as a client in the summer of 2014 after his older brother Nick had signed and recommended him.

Diaz, the complaint states, was “looking for a management team that could take him to the next level which he had previously been unable to do.”

The brothers “represented and assured” Ballengee that in exchange for representing the younger Diaz, he would pay the firm “on the same terms and as set forth in” the elder Diaz, “and that The Ballengee Group would, if such terms were agreeable to it, represent Nate on all future bouts and business matters.”

The firm subsequently negotiated with the UFC on the younger Diaz’s behalf for several bouts, including his blockbuster against Conor McGregor at UFC 196, an ill-fated rematch planned for UFC 200 and a follow-up at UFC 202.

Diaz wound up making a disclosed $500,000 for UFC 196 and $2 million for UFC 202, though his final pay was likely much higher.

On the Diaz brothers’ recommendation, the management firm also picked up Smith, negotiating a promotional agreement in March 2016.

But just four months later in July, or one month after terms for UFC 202 had been negotiated, the suit claims Nate Diaz “unexpectedly” terminated its representation, and Smith did the same in November.

The suit claims that unbeknownst to Ballengee, attorney Awad had begun “interfering with their agreements” with the Diaz brothers and advised Nate Diaz and Smith not to pay for their services.

As a result, the firm is suing Awad for tortious interference while alleging the defendants “intended to avoid payment for the plaintiff’s services by intentionally or knowingly securing the performance of the service by deception,” or “knowingly securing the performance of a service by agreeing to provide compensation and, after the service was rendered, failing to make payment after receiving notice demanding payment.”

The suit argues had the interference not occurred, Ballengee would still be working with Nate Diaz and Smith. It requests “exemplary damages” be awarded to the management firm in addition to “actual, economic, and non-economic damages in an amount within the jurisdictional limits” of the court, as well as attorney’s fees.

Diaz (19-11 MMA,14-9 UFC), 32, remains inactive on the UFC’s roster since turning down a fight with Tony Ferguson at UFC 213 when the promotion didn’t reach his financial demands. The rematch with McGregor at UFC 202 ended in a unanimous decision loss, reversing a triumphant submission win over the current UFC lightweight champ at UFC 196.

Smith (9-7-1 MMA, 3-3 UFC), meanwhile, is slated to face Lina Lansberg at UFC Fight Night 113. She’s hoping to build on a recent decision over Mexican prospect Irene Aldana at UFC on FOX 22.

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Filed under: Featured, News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie

Nate Diaz responds to Conor McGregor-Floyd Mayweather booking with a reminder for McGregor

Filed under: News, UFC

You knew Nate Diaz was going to chime in after today’s announcement of the Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor boxing match booked for later this summer.

Just minutes after the fight was confirmed, Diaz (19-11 MMA, 14-9 UFC), who split a pair of UFC fights with McGregor (21-3 MMA, 9-1 UFC) in 2016, took to social media and let his thoughts on the bout with Mayweather (49-0 boxing) be known.

Instagram Photo

Diaz hasn’t competed since his majority-decision loss to McGregor at UFC 202 this past August. There recently was talk of him competing in an interim lightweight title bout against Tony Ferguson at UFC 213 in July, but the fight never came to fruition.

He originally said he wouldn’t fight again until a trilogy match with “The Notorious” was offered, and it appears he may stick to his guns in hopes of getting that fight once McGregor finishes his business with Mayweather in the boxing ring.

For more on the UFC’s upcoming schedule, check out the UFC Rumors section of the site.

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Filed under: News, UFC
Source: MMA Junkie