Diego Sanchez, Clay Guida to enter UFC Hall of Fame fight wing for TUF 9 Finale classic
An epic back-and-forth encounter that resulted in one of the most memorable three-round fights in UFC history will be enshrined in the UFC Hall of Fame this summer.
Sanchez (29-11 MMA, 18-11 UFC) earned a split-decision victory over Guida (35-18 MMA, 15-12 UFC) in the lightweight bout, which took place at Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas.
“There are certain guys that, when you match them up, there’s no doubt in your mind that it’s going to be a good fight, and this was one of those fights,” UFC president Dana White said in a statement. “This fight represents everything that fans around the world love about UFC and the sport of mixed martial arts. Diego and Clay are two maniacs, and as soon as the fight began, they both came out blasting each other. It was crazy.
“This was an absolute war, and both guys gave everything they had for all three rounds. This fight was so good it was named the 2009 Fight of the Year. It is one of the best displays of heart, endurance and will to win that you will ever see. Congratulations to Diego Sanchez and Clay Guida on a fight that will always be remembered as one of the best ever.”
The induction ceremony takes place July 5 in Las Vegas at The Pearl at Palms Casino Resort. It is set to stream on UFC Fight Pass. Sanchez is scheduled to fight Michael Chiesa the following night at UFC 239.
“The Nightmare” is the original winner of “The Ultimate Fighter” reality series and is still competing more than 14 years after making his octagon debut.
The victory over Guida catapulted Sanchez into a title fight with B.J. Penn at UFC 107, but he would fall short of the belt by fifth-round TKO.
“The fight with Guida was really fun,” Sanchez said. “My mentality was that it was time to get street on this wrestler, and that’s exactly what I did.”
Although Guida did not get the result he wanted in the contest, he said he’s grateful for the experience and to make the UFC Hall of Fame.
“When you take a rampaging beast like Diego Sanchez, and a wild Tasmanian devil like me, you get a recipe for Fight of the Year, and that’s what we gave UFC fans that night,” Guida said. “The fans were the true winners, and they deserved it more than anyone. Thank you for inducting this prolific battle into the UFC Hall of Fame.”
Sanchez vs. Guida joins Dan Henderson vs. Mauricio Rua, Pete Williams vs. Mark Coleman, Matt Hughes vs. Frank Trigg 2, and Forrest Griffin vs. Stephen Bonnar in the UFC Hall of Fame fight wing.