On a night in which the president of the United States and Hollywood superstar Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson were both in the house, New York State Athletic Commission Chief Medical Officer Nitin K. Sethi apparently decided he wanted to be the star of the show.
Diaz (20-12 MMA, 15-10 UFC), however, was cut above and below his right eye, and while Diaz has fought his way through plenty worse in his career, Sethi took a cursory glance at Diaz between rounds and decided to call off the fight, much to the chagrin of the capacity crowd at New York’s Madison Square Garden.
It goes in the books as a TKO stoppage at 5:00 of the third round, but Masvidal (35-13 MMA, 11-6 UFC), for his part, made it clear he was unsatisfied with the premature stoppage and was ready to run things back as soon as possible.
“For a fact, you gave me the love I’ll give you the love,” Masvidal told Diaz. “I don’t like to leave the ring like this with my opponent still conscious. We have to run it back.”