Jorge Masvidal's last fight was a signal for the UFC to keep coming to Miami
Masvidal embodied Miami throughout his career. And on Saturday, he took his off gloves a final time in the same place where he attended his first UFC event in 2003.
The collective energy from Masvidal and the crowd on fight week were electric. Every mention of Masvidal's name triggered a roar from the crowd. Even though he went up against Gilbert Burns, who also resides in South Florida, you can tell from the boos and cheers that this was Masvidal's kingdom.
Masvidal promised violence. And although it was a good fight to watch, it was not exactly the show-stopper fans hoped for. At the end of 15 minutes, Burns earned the decision win and paid respects to his opponent, who had hinted at his retirement in the event of a loss.
"It's been a long 20 years," Masvidal said in his post-fight interview. "50-something fights. You know, sometimes your favorite basketball player ain't got that three-pointer no more. Your favorite quarterback loses that rifle. I don't feel the same when I get in here no more."
Masvidal went on to talk about how he hopes his career has inspired others to strive for their own ambitions.
"I didn't have s*** when I started. I can say I'm good for life now," he said.
It may not be the fairytale ending that Masvidal wanted. As someone whose career has been characterized by finishes, he wanted nothing more than to close the fight in his territory. However, to end his journey in the same place where it started must be a great feeling as he clocked out for the last time. From backyard boxing matches to UFC stardom, Masvidal now rides into the Miami sunset.
And results aside, this was a great way for Miami to advocate itself as a city to be a staple in the UFC calendar.