In a fight that wasn't previously scheduled two days before, Nate Diaz submitted Tony Ferguson in the fourth round in what is expected to be his final UFC fight.
The fight was the headliner of Saturday's UFC 279 in Las Vegas, Nevada, and one of three fights that were changed around due to original Diaz opponent Khamzat Chimaev missing weight by nearly eight pounds on Friday.
The end came when Ferguson went for a takedown as Diaz was punching him. Diaz countered with a guillotine choke and finished it in quick order.
This was Diaz's final fight on his UFC deal, giving him the contractual freedom he has desired for years. It's expected he will not re-sign with the UFC and will go into boxing with a Jake Paul fight likely in 2023.
During his post-fight comments, Diaz did say that he's had a love/hate relationship with the UFC but loves the UFC, Dana White, Lorenzo Fertitta and Hunter Campbell. He said he is going to go into another sport and show people how it's done.
Ferguson was originally slated to face Li Jingliang in a welterweight co-main event. Jingliang instead faced Daniel Rodriguez after his opponent, Kevin Holland, was moved up to face Chimaev instead.
Chimaev dispatched Holland easily, submitting him in the first round. Rodriguez, carrying a notable weight advantage against Jingliang, picked up a unanimous decision win.
Diaz and Ferguson had a competitive fight with Diaz showing his prowess on the feet by battering Ferguson while also throwing in some leg kicks for good measure. One Diaz checked kick bloodied up Ferguson's shin in the first round.
Ferguson, however, was able to do damage on Diaz's lead leg using his own kicks.
The fight featured the usual theatrics he and brother Nick have been known for. At one point in the third, Diaz took a quick break and rested his arm on the top of the cage which got a hero's reaction from the crowd.
The 37-year-old Diaz now has his first win since August 2019 and snapped a two-fight losing streak in the process.
The 38-year-old Ferguson has now lost five straight fights dating back to May 2020. Tonight was just his second fight since June 2021.