The fight was thought -- especially at the time -- to be one of the most exciting ground fights in UFC and MMA history. The fight was also thought to be an intense grudge match, with both fighters hating each other. The hate was mainly instigated by Nick Diaz. Diego Sanchez came out the victor in a razor-close decision.
The first round began. Sanchez came running out as usual. They circled. Sanchez got Diaz's back and Diaz tried to roll out. Diaz tried to roll for a kneebar. Diaz brought it to full guard. Sanchez struggled to posture up. Sanchez missed some ground-and-pound and stood, diving back into full guard. Sanchez stood and made it to half-guard. Diaz landed some good elbows from the bottom into Sanchez's face. Sanchez stood repeatedly, struggling. The crowd chanted 'Diego'. Sanchez got Diaz's back. Sanchez began looking for a kimura. Diaz fought out and made it to side control but Sanchez fought out and they scrambled and rolled. Sanchez sprawled. They stood and Sanchez threw a big knee to Diaz's face as they stood. Sanchez took Diaz's back. They scrambled and rolled once more. Diaz ended up on his back, landing some good punches from the bottom and Sanchez stood, landing ground-and-pound. Sanchez continued with the ground-and-pound but Diaz seemed unaffected. Sanchez made it to half-guard. Diaz brought it back to full-guard but Sanchez continually postured up. Diaz landed a good kick from the bottom but Sanchez was smiling. Sanchez made it to side control. There was a mouse under Diaz's right eye. Diaz brought it to full guard. The crowd was chanting 'Diego'. Sanchez continued the ground-and-pound and stood and the first round ended.
The second round began. Diaz tried a kick and fell. They stood. Diaz avoided a takedown. Diaz landed a big left. Sanchez got the takedown into Diaz's full guard. He stood once more and ate a few upkicks. Diaz brought it back to full guard. Sanchez postured up and ate some shots from the bottom. Sanchez got the slam but he was still in full guard, landing ground-and-pound. Sanchez landed some good elbows. Diaz was starting to bleed pretty badly. Sanchez took Diaz's back but Diaz rolled out and brought it back to full guard. Diaz landed some shots from the bottom. Sanchez stood and ate an upkick but continued the ground-and-pound. Diaz brought it back to complete full guard. Sanchez landed a good knee to the face as Diaz tried to sweep. Diaz rolled into a leglock and ended up in Sanchez's full guard. Sanchez threw an elbow from the bottom. Diaz stood and landed some ground-and-pound. Sanchez spun out and they stood. Diaz was bloodied up bad. Sanchez got the takedown and got Diaz's back. The second round ended. Diaz was bleeding from his mouth in the corner.
The third round began. Diaz landed a big left hand and staggered Sanchez. Diaz landed a good jab. Sanchez shot in but missed. Sanchez landed a good right. Sanchez shot in again, avoided by Diaz. Sanchez was bleeding. Sanchez got the takedown into full guard. Diaz landed some shots from the bottom. Sanchez was bleeding a lot now. They stood. Sanchez got Diaz's back. Sanchez tried to mount but Diaz brought it back to guard. The crowd chanted 'Diego'. They stood and Sanchez got the headlock. Diaz got the takedown. Diaz was bleeding bad. Sanchez had a bad cut over his right eyebrow. Sanchez ate an elbow. Sanchez landed some elbows from the bottom. Sanchez locked up the armbar but Diaz fought out. Sanchez reversed Diaz. They scrambled viciously and Sanchez ended up in Diaz's full guard. Sanchez landed a big elbow and some ground-and-pound. Sanchez dropped bombs. Sanchez passed to half-guard. The third and final round ended. 30-27 for the winner by unanimous decision Diego Sanchez.