Dana White Announces Kamaru Usman vs. Jorge Masvidal is a Go
Recently there were multiple signs pointing to a bout between Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal materializing, and now Dana White's confirmed the growing rivals are going to scrap.
Ever since Conor McGregor quickly cruised through Donald Cerrone at UFC 246, there’s been many indicators that Jorge Masvidal will likely battle Kamaru Usman next. Now, UFC President Dana White has reported that indeed, that fight is planned for July.
White reports Usman – Masvidal is on deck
For a few months now, Masvidal let it be known that he was more than willing to fight McGregor. In fact, “Gamebred” said that he’d rather fight McGregor than for the welterweight title next, due to the check he would collect.
But, as UFC 246 approached, tensions started rising between Usman and Masvidal, and the latter started shifting his stance. After McGregor took out Cerrone, White said the plan was to have the former champ fight the winner of the April 18th bout between Khabib Nurmagomedov and Tony Ferguson. Then this week, Usman and Masvidal made news, when the two had a fiery exchange at a Super Bowl media event.
Well, more recently White spoke with Jim Rome. While talking about Masvidal and his Miami connection, as well as his next fight, the UFC President said this (quotes via MMA Junkie):
“We haven’t had a fighter from Miami to embrace yet,” White said. “Since I got here, I went to dinner last night, I’ve been walking around – everybody’s yelling, ‘When’s Masvidal fighting in Miami?’ Not soon. We’re going to bring him to Vegas. Him and Usman will fight in Vegas, probably International Fight Week (in July). If he wins, maybe we’ll do his first title defense down here in Miami.”
“That was the plan, and whatever happened with them (Wednesday) – we hadn’t announced it yet, but now this has forced me to announce it,” White said.
“People love (Masvidal),” White said. “He’s authentic. He’s real. He’s hardcore. The stuff that went down with Usman, the stuff that went down with (Leon) Edwards – that’s the kind of guy he is. That’s how him and (Nate) Diaz ended up fighting for the ‘BMF’ belt. He’s legit, he’s real, and people feel it, and people like it.”
So, this news shouldn’t come as a surprise (although, it doesn’t sound like the fight’s completely official just yet). As noted above, the writing has been on the wall in terms of this fight happening.
Will McGregor really wait out?
The big question here, however, is whether McGregor will, or has, agreed to wait out for another shot at the lightweight title. For sometime now, McGregor’s talked about staying busy and after he beat Cerrone, he said he doesn’t want to wait on the sidelines to face the winner of Khabib – Tony. If he does, that likely means he won’t fight again until late summer, early fall.
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