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Jorge Masvidal on Kamaru Usman UFC 261 Fight: I Want to 'Break His F--king Face'

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorApril 22, 2021

Jorge Masvidal speaks at a news conference for the UFC 244 mixed martial arts event, Thursday, Sept. 19, 2019, in New York. Masvidal is scheduled to fight Diaz Saturday, November 2 at Madison Square Garden. (AP Photo/Gregory Payan)
Gregory Payan/Associated Press

UFC fighter Jorge Masvidal didn't mince words during an interview with Justin Barrasso of Sports Illustrated in advance of his rematch with welterweight champion Kamaru Usman at UFC 261 on Saturday.

"Instead of investing all my energy on running through the desert to sweat and make weight, all my energy is focused on breaking Usman's face," Masvidal said. "I'm going to give all I can to break his f--king face."

The fight is a rematch of their July 2020 matchup at UFC 251, when Usman defended his belt via a unanimous-decision victory. That fight marks Masvidal's most recent bout.

Usman most recently retained the title against Gilbert Burns via third-round TKO.ย 

As Kevin Iole of Yahoo Sports noted, Masvidal took the Usman fight on six days' notice and needed to cut 20 pounds in five days to make weight after Burns, the original challenger, tested positive for COVID-19.

Masvidal hung tough, but Usman dominated the fight, winning all five rounds on two judges' scorecards and four of five on the third.

Usman's goal for this upcoming match is to retain the belt and ensure that he beats Masvidal after he had a full camp and more time to adequately prepare.

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Usman's manager, Ali Abdelaziz, spoke about his fighter with Iole.

"I look at Kamaru as a marathon runner who has lapped everybody and is now coming around and passing them a second time. Kamaru is on top of the mountain and let's be honest: There's no one close to him. But Masvidal is saying he can do much better, and Kamaru has already beaten everyone in the division who is title-worthy. Masvidal is able to say, 'Oh, I wasn't training and I had to cut all of this weight,' even though we all know that is [expletive] and he was training. But now there are no excuses: Kamaru is giving him another shot and he'll prove it once and for all."

The two fighters will headline the card, which will take place at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.

Three titles will be on the line Saturday, with Zhang Weili defending her strawweight belt against Rose Namajunas and Valentina Shevchenko also looking for her fifth straight flyweight defense versus Jessica Andrade.