Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) lightweight titleholder, Anthony Pettis, has not won back-to-back fights in nearly five years, racking up a 4-6 record since dropping his strap to Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 185.
The now-welterweight “Showtime” is currently ranked No. 12 at 170 pounds, thanks in part to his unanimous decision loss to Nate Diaz at UFC 241 in Anaheim.
With no chance of fighting for the division strap and nobody at lightweight able to answer the call, Pettis (22-9) will instead focus on fan-friendly showdowns against other longtime veterans of the sport, like the original “Ultimate Fighter,” Diego Sanchez.
“I want Diego Sanchez,” Pettis told MMA Junkie. “That’s what I told Duke. One more fight before the end of the year. I tell myself three big fights this year. He’s available. At 155, there’s no one available for me. I want to stay busy. I feel like especially the fans want to see it. That’s what it’s all about. If the fans want to see the fights I choose, then it works out. There’s a lot of good guys, but I feel like Diego deserves that kind of fight. He’s been around a long time.”
Sanchez (29-12) has also struggled to stay consistent, putting together a 5-5 record across his last 10 fights while getting finished in three of those five losses. The 37 year-old “Nightmare” is coming off a unanimous decision loss to former lightweight, Michael Chiesa, at UFC 239.
Pettis is hoping to get booked before the end of the year.