By Edward Chaykovsky
Former IBF lightweight champion Julio Diaz (40-10-1, 29KOs), 34-years-old, has announced his retirement from Saturday's third round stoppage at the hands of Keith Thurman, the WBA's interim-welterweight champion. Diaz was rattled a few times during the fight and couldn't continue after three, after suffering a rib injury from a hard shot to the body.
Diaz has been winless since 2012. He fought current IBF champion Shawn Porter to a draw in 2012 and some felt Diaz did enough to win that fight. He returned last April and nearly derailed Amir Khan, dropping the British star and hurting him badly in the later rounds, but Khan won a razor-thin decision. Diaz then came back a few months later in a rematch with Porter, who this time clearly won a unanimous decision.
"To those of you who truly wish me well... I'm sorry I couldn't come through. But a rib injury is no joke when you can't breath. I've fought my heart out for 25 years but we gotta know when to accept defeat. Thank you once again to those who appreciated my skills and effort all these years. Olympic trials, two world titles and great experiences was all worth it. I think it's time to move on and make room for the new up and comers. Our valley has great talent still and let's give them the same support I've received through out my career. Thank you again and god bless."