In the second round, Anderson Silva threw a leg kick. Chris Weidman checked it perfectly, which resulted in Silva's shin making direct contact with Weidman's knee.
The force of Silva's kick snapped his leg in devastating fashion.
Boxing Insider tweeted out a graphic photo:
Silva instantly crumbled to the ground and screamed out in pain, a telling sight for a man who has made his name by being miles tougher than his competition.
Naturally, fans, fighters and media took to Twitter to discuss what they had just seen, and MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani started things off:
Anderson is yelling at the top of his lungs on the stretcher backstage. I've never heard anything like that. A horrible sound.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) December 29, 2013
Yahoo! Sports' Kevin Iole and MMA Fighting's Dave Doyle gave updates on what was happening with Silva in real time:
They're putting a cast on Anderson in the cage— Kevin Iole (@KevinI) December 29, 2013
Silva's being strapped on to a stretcher.— Dave Doyle (@davedoylemma) December 29, 2013
Past that, though, few expressed anything other than shock, horror and nauseation:
Oh god, that was a sick ending to that fight. ;-;— Roxanne Modafferi (@Roxyfighter) December 29, 2013
I'm having a tough time with what happened. That's a horrible way to go.— Jeremy Botter (@jeremybotter) December 29, 2013
I'm going to remember that Anderson scream forever. You try not to get emotional here but it was truly heart-breaking. A cruel end.— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) December 29, 2013
My night is ruined .I feel like a kid waiting for Santa & I see my parents putting gifts under the tree in the middle of the night! #UFC168— Derek Brunson (@DerekBrunsonMMA) December 29, 2013
I NOW NEVER WANY TO KICK AGAIN WoW!!!— Cowboy Cerrone (@Cowboycerrone) December 29, 2013
MMA Junkie brought up an interesting point.
This is a combat sport, and while many, including Dana White, revel in seeing battered men put their bodies through things they aren't designed to sustain, it is undeniably hypocritical to then turn away or whitewash gruesome injuries like this:
@MMAjunkieSteven agreed— Adam Martin (@MMAdamMartin) December 29, 2013
Some of our Bleacher Report staff are at odds over how Weidman handled the immediate aftermath:
@ScottHarrisMMA He was conducting an interview and answering questions. I saw nothing wrong with Weidman post-fight, not a lot he can do.— Riley Kontek (@RileyKontekMMA) December 29, 2013
This is certainly an unfortunate way to end an otherwise truly great night of fights. Make sure to keep with us for more details on Silva in our coverage of the post-fight press conference.