Tensions were high last night at World Series of Fighting (WSOF) 22: "Palhares vs. Shields" event in Las Vegas, Nevada, and not just because of the main event antics between Rousimar Palhares and Jake Shields.
Unseen to the audience on NBC Sports was a fracas that took place cageside between the fight camps for UFC Lightweights Nate Diaz and Khabib Nurmagomedov. The latter was obviously there to support his brother Abubakar, who earned a unanimous decision over Jorge Moreno. The Diaz brothers were both there to support Shields.
What happened next can be seen in the video footage below (more here, too). Nate and Khabib exchanged pleasantries, with the former allegedly throwing a punch and forcing security to get between both sides. Just when things seemed to have settled down, Nick Diaz threw a beer at Nurmagomedov and lit the whole thing up again.
WSOF Vice President Ali Abdel-Aziz joined security in breaking up the brawl, at which point everybody was ejected from the premises, leading Abdel-Aziz to issue a lifetime ban on the Diaz brothers.
"I can't have Nick and Nate come to a World Series of Fighting event again. I like these guys, but if they're not going to show me respect coming to the show, how can I let them back in? You've just got to be more professional in MMA. Nate and Nick, all the times I talk to them, they're good guys, but they need to start making a (positive) impression. I know they sell better because they don't care, but you're going to make people not like you if you do stuff like that."
That was hardly the end of the show though as both camps continued to scuffle in the hotel lobby (and bar) after leaving.
It's hard to imagine the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) won't have something to say about all of this once the dust settles. California authorities might want to reconsider their prison plea deal with the older Diaz, too.