Kamaru Usman heaps praise on Jorge Masvidal after retaining welterweight title on Fight Island

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‘Gamebred is the biggest, baddest dude out there right now’: Bullish Kamaru Usman heaps praise on Jorge Masvidal after downing him to retain welterweight title on Fight Island – but declares himself ‘a level better’

  • Kamaru Usman defeated Jorge Masvidal to retain his UFC welterweight title
  • Usman dominated and earned a unanimous 50-45, 50-45, 49-46 points victory 
  • Masvidal took the fight on six days’ notice and looked sluggish on Fight Island 
  • But after the bout, Usman labelled his opponent ‘the biggest, baddest dude’ 

Kamaru Usman retained his UFC welterweight title after defeating a sluggish Jorge Masvidal on Fight Island – but spared praise for his opponent before declaring himself ‘a level better’.

The 33-year-old clinched the win with a unanimous decision from all three judges and dominated Masvidal, who infamously took the fight on just six days’ notice, in the headline bout at UFC 251.

And after equalling Georges St-Pierre’s record of 12 consecutive welterweight victories, a bullish Usman admitted Masvidal proved ‘tough’ during his statement performance to the rest of the division.

Kamaru Usman beat Jorge Masvidal to retain the welterweight title at UFC 251 on Fight Island

After downing Masvidal, who had six days to prepare for the bout, Usman praised his opponent

After downing Masvidal, who had six days to prepare for the bout, Usman praised his opponent

He said: ‘Gamebred (Masvidal) is the biggest, baddest dude out there right now, so I had to switch gears preparing for him on six days’ notice. 

‘All these guys are preparing for one guy and that’s me, at the top of the mountain.

‘I trained for Gilbert, I had a different game plan. Gamebred is tough, he landed some elbows from the bottom and he didn’t quit.

‘I knew Jorge is tough, I’ve always said it minus all the trash talking and all the things going on, Jorge is a tough guy and I give him credit for that.

The 33-year-old's superior wrestling and grappling had proved too much for the fan favourite

The 33-year-old’s superior wrestling and grappling had proved too much for the fan favourite

Usman has equalled Georges St-Pierre's superb record of 12 straight welterweight victories

Usman has equalled Georges St-Pierre’s superb record of 12 straight welterweight victories

‘I’m just levels better. I have more tools in the toolbox and when I need to I can pull them out and use them.’ 

An accidental clash of heads drew blood from the challenger early on but Usman rallied to take control of the rest of the bout, even cutting Masvidal again after taking the second round.       

The steady showing from the champion forced Masvidal to search for a spectacular finish in the championship round, but was forced down to the mat with elbows and failed to recover.

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