Jorge Masvidal and Nate Diaz: History of Rivalry

Published 04/23/2021, 11:24 AM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NV – JANUARY 16: UFC welterweight Jorge Masvidal interacts with the media during the UFC 246 Ultimate Media Day at UFC APEX on January 16, 2020 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


The UFC BMF belt was an unprecedented phenomenon in the promotion. It wasn’t the first time that the UFC was trying out something new, but it was surely the biggest.

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Jorge Masvidal and Nate Diaz were going to fight for the BMF belt in the main event of UFC 244 in front of a sold-out Madison Square Garden.

However, the road to this fight was almost impossible to fathom. Diaz had called Masvidal out after his win over Anthony Pettis at UFC 241.

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The call-out came completely out of the blue, and people had just assumed that Diaz would call for a trilogy fight with Conor McGregor. However, ‘The West Coast Gangster’ doesn’t do things like your average Joe.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 02: Nate Diaz of the United States fights against Jorge Masvidal (not pictured) of the United States in the Welterweight “BMF” championship bout during UFC 244 at Madison Square Garden on November 02, 2019, in New York City. (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images)

The call-out was received with a lot of traction, and Dana White also liked that fight. In the post-fight press conference, he agreed that everyone would want to see that fight.

Diaz’s callout showed a lot of respect to Masvidal, and it was another opportunity for him to capitalize on his growing popularity. However, Masvidal wasn’t supposed to be in that place.

He was floating around in the qualms of mediocrity in 2016. A journeyman who just couldn’t take the next step, he was 29-11 after a good career. It would have been a satisfactory life for everyone, but Masvidal wasn’t going to settle for it.

He turned his life around and started winning fights decisively. He won 3 fights in a row, culminating in his impressive win over Donald Cerrone via knockout. Masvidal lost his next 2, but they were close fights. Nevertheless, the best year of his life was yet to come.

Jorge Masvidal and his rise to UFC superstardom

The American’s stock was sky high at this point, and he beat Darren Till via knockout, an upset that no one had expected. He went one better in his next fight after he knocked out former Olympian and Bellator welterweight champion Ben Askren in 5 seconds. It was the fastest knockout in the history of the UFC.

This got to Diaz, and he called Masvidal out. The fight was announced, and the UFC introduced the BMF belt. There was mutual respect between the two fighters, and trash-talk was surprisingly sparse. However, they still managed to sell out the arena and earned the UFC more than $6.5 million in gate value.

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NEW YORK, NEW YORK – NOVEMBER 02: Nate Diaz of the United States (R) fights against Jorge Masvidal of the United States in the Welterweight “BMF” championship bout during UFC 244 at Madison Square Garden on November 02, 2019, in New York City. (Photo by Steven Ryan/Getty Images)

The fight lived up to the expectations of everyone. It was a brawl and went on till 3 rounds. However, a doctor decided that Diaz wasn’t fit enough to continue, and hence the fight was stopped.

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Both Diaz and Masvidal opposed this decision and called for a rematch, but that fight hasn’t materialized yet. However, one would be in the wrong to rule this fight out in the future.

Do you think Nate Diaz can beat Jorge Masvidal?

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Aniket Awasthi

429 articles

Aniket Awasthi is a UFC author at EssentiallySports. This STEM undergraduate combines an insatiable urge to write with his admiration for MMA and the UFC in general to enhance his journalism. He calls charismatic names like Chael Sonnen and 'The Count' Michael Bisping as his favorite fighters, but he is a great admirer of the rise of Israel Adesanya ever since he fought Rob Wilkinson at UFC 221.

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