UFC 266: Conor McGregor, Kamaru Usman and other UFC fighters react to Nick Diaz vs. Robbie Lawler

Nick Diaz was active with his standup during his return against Robbie Lawler at UFC 266, landing 150 significant strikes over the course of the fight. Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Nick Diaz vs. Robbie Lawler was a rematch more than 17 years in the making, and for two-plus rounds it generated the kind of excitement fans were hoping for. The old rivals exchanged strikes and kept the fight on the feet, until a body shot by Lawler sent Diaz crumpling to the ground with his arm protecting his body.

As he absorbed one more big punch on the ground, referee Jason Herzog asked Diaz if he was OK to continue, and after Diaz failed to return to his feet and answer that call, there was no choice but to end the fight, giving Lawler a victory by TKO.

To that point, according to ESPN Stats & Information, Diaz outlanded Lawler with 150 significant strikes to Lawler's 131. Throughout the fight, and in its aftermath, the UFC roster paid tribute to two of the pioneers of the earliest days of the UFC.