They say time heals all wounds, and that’s apparently the case when it comes to Nate Marquardt and his relationship with the UFC and Dana White.
Marquardt was infamously released from the promotion in 2011 after he was not cleared to fight Rick Story at UFC on Versus 4. In reality what happened was Marquardt’s testosterone levels were not in line with what the Pennsylvania Athletic Commission had set forth for him after learning that he was on testosterone replacement therapy.
Due to the last minute change to the main event with Marquardt being pulled, UFC President Dana White immediately announced that he was dropping the former middleweight contender from the UFC all together.
Eventually Marquardt was able to re-sign under the Zuffa family, but this time he landed in Strikeforce as a welterweight contender where he faced Tyron Woodley earlier this year for the vacant 170lb championship. Marquardt won the fight by 4th round knockout, and will next defend the belt as the headline fight in the final Strikeforce card on Jan 12 against Tarec Saffiedine.
Now according to UFC President Dana White, Marquardt has done enough to land back in the good graces of the promotion because win, lose or draw on Jan 12, he will likely get to come back and compete in the Octagon.
“Yeah, probably,” White answered when asked about Marquardt’s prospects of returning to the UFC. “I would have to say so. I was never in a bad way with him. I like Nate Marquardt, he’s one of the nicest guys ever. You know how I get; I get bummed out when guys do stuff like that. You’re a professional; show up here and do what you’re supposed to do.”
Before he can make his return to the UFC however, Marquardt will first try to dispatch of Team Quest fighter Tarec Saffiedine, and with a win he’ll come in on day one as a top challenger at welterweight where his good friend and teammate Georges St-Pierre sits as champion.