Kamaru Usman is riding high in the UFC’s dangerous welterweight division. The reigning 170-pound champ is coming off his third-straight title defense and ready to continue picking off each and every top contender.
The next name on Usman’s hit list is none other than Jorge Masvidal. The two welterweights met back at UFC 251 in July 2020 on “Fight Island.” Usman defeated “Gamebred” via unanimous decision, but Masvidal only had six days to prepare for the fight. Masvidal’s lack of time to train and determine a proper game plan for the champ is the main reason why both fighters want to run it back.
Luckily, Usman and Masvidal will get there wish when the two welterweights collide again for the undisputed title at UFC 261 next month in Florida (details HERE).
“You said you wanted more than six days. Well, guess what? Now I’ve given you six weeks,” Usman told TMZ. “You asked for three, but I doubled it and gave you six, so April 24, this time there’ll be no excuse. That’s it; let’s go in. You know what I’m looking to do, put the nail in the coffin, so bring your best game.”
Usman, who just defeated former teammate Gilbert Burns via third-round TKO at UFC 258, has done everything that the promotion has asked of him over the past few years. He is quickly becoming one of the best welterweight fighters of all time and one of the most dominant champions in all of MMA today. Usman’s success and dominance has allowed him to drive the bus in 2021 and call out the fights he wants, which all starts with Masvidal.
“Let’s be honest: If I had to pick, I can do whatever I want to do,” Usman said. “I’ve cleared the division up. Now it’s time to lap everybody. It’s like we’re running a race. Now I’m about to lap everyone, so I went in and told (UFC president Dana White), ‘Hey, give me him (Masvidal).’ He’s a tough guy. I know he’s a tough guy. Yeah, it’s risky, it’s dangerous, but guess what? I want to put the nail in that coffin once and for all. And that’s how that fight got made.”
Usman had a few other contenders to pick from, including rival Colby Covington, Leon Edwards, and even Stephen Thompson, but the champion wanted his chance to shut “Gamebred” down again. Masvidal has remained adamant that a longer camp and more time to prepare for Usman will produce different results. Usman is here to prove that’s not the case and that Masvidal is biting off more than he can chew (again).
“It’s two things,” Usman said. “One, he either truly believes it, which I have to take very, very seriously, or he’s just too stupid to understand what’s happening right now. So I’ve got to believe it’s the first one, and I’ve got to take him at his word. He’s a very, very dangerous opponent. I never took that away from him. He did great things in 2019, but that was 2019. Now it’s time to come back to reality. It’s 2021, (and) his ship has sailed.
“I said it before: You’re a journeyman. Not in a disrespectful way because there’s nothing wrong with being a journeyman, but you’re a journeyman and that’s good, because that means you’re gonna win some, you’re gonna lose some. That’s OK. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that, but don’t try to pose as if you’re something more than that, as if you could dethrone the champion. Don’t try and do that.”
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