The UFC welterweight title picture is really starting to heat up lately, which makes it all the more frustrating when an actual title defense from division champ Kamaru Usman seems nowhere near to happening. The UFC tried to set up a long awaited scrap between Usman and #1 contender Colby Covington, but money issues derailed that one.
And according to BMF belt contender Jorge Masvidal, the UFC initially tried to set up Usman vs. Masvidal, but this time it was Usman who initially refused the fight.
“They told me several names – one of them was Usman,” Masvidal told media in Mexico City (translated from Spanish by MMA Junkie). “I said, ‘OK, let’s go.’”
“They told Usman this is the fight. He said no. They told him, ‘If you don’t fight, we’re going to take the belt away from you,’ and they started looking for another fight – that person was Nate Diaz. Usman called. ‘I want the fight.’ And they told him, ‘Too late. We have Nate Diaz, a guy that does want to fight,’ and that’s it. We have the hardest fight that exists in the whole history of the UFC on Nov. 2.”
As far as Masvidal is concerned, Usman’s reluctance to fight him stems from fear.
“Why do you think he said no, my brother?” Masvidal asked. “That guy knows that I’m going to baptize him. That guy has never wanted to fight with me. That guy can only do one thing right: smell balls good.”
“He can’t fight. He has his face there. He doesn’t want to [throw hands], even when he has the chance to throw the hands, and when he has the guy on the floor, he doesn’t do anything. It’s not that I don’t have respect for wrestlers. I have a lot of respect to the community of wrestlers, like Khabib. I have a lot of respect for him because he tries to finish fights, he tries to get his hands in there, he tries to choke people.”
”Someone like Usman? I don’t respect his style at all. As a person, I don’t know him, and what I do know, it doesn’t interest me much about him.”
Masvidal faces off against Nate Diaz at UFC 244 on November 2nd for the imaginary BMF belt. And who knows, maybe the winner of that scrap will get to challenge for the actual welterweight title ... whoever if anyone is still holding it early in 2020.