UFC 251 Preview: How Is Kamaru Usman Preparing for BMF Champion Jorge Masvidal?

Ever since the two were involved in clash during Super Bowl media day this past year, the world has been craving for a fight between Jorge Masvidal and Kamaru Usman. So has Usman, who is about four days away from defending his UFC Welterweight Championship.

Masvidal is replacing Gilbert Burns in the main event after Burns tested positive for COVID-19. Both Usman and Masvidal have tested negative for COVID-19 and are ready to go. Speaking with TMZ Sports, Usman discussed the change in opponent and preparing for someone different with less than a week until UFC 251.

“It’s just a minor change, but at the end of the day, when you’re in training camp and you train the way that I train, you see no face,” Usman stated, via MMA Junkie. “At the end, you see no face. I have to be ready to, when I cross into that octagon, I have to turn on the ‘Nigerian Nightmare’ and leave Kamaru Usman on the outside.

“Now it’s just a little extra push to go in there and really do some damage – so it didn’t make me no difference.”

Usman (16-1) is on a fifteen-fight win streak dating back to 2013. He beat Tyron Woodley for the title at UFC 235 and defended it against Colby Covington at UFC 245 in December. The two were rumored to fight in July since February.

Masvidal (35-13) last fought at UFC 244 in November, beating Nate Diaz via TKO for the BMF Title. He is currently on a three-fight win streak and is 6-2 in his last eight fights. A highlight of his run has been cementing the record of the fastest KO in UFC history against Ben Askren.

Regarding the BMF Title, Usman has stated that Masvidal is a changed man since winning the belt inside Madison Square Garden. While it is not meant to be defended, Usman wouldn’t mind picking up more piece of hardware if he were to take down Masvidal.

“That’s my (expletive), absolutely,” Usman went on to say. “They’re saying it’s a ‘BMF’ – they’re really considering this a real title, kind of an interim thing or whatever. They’re really considering this a title. So you know, yes – after I go out there and beat his ass and ragdoll him, that (expletive) is coming home with me so I can throw it in my closet.”

UFC 251 will be on “Fight Island” on July 11, which will take place in Abu Dhabi on Yas Island. The co-main event will be Alexander Volkanovski v. Max Holloway in a rematch for the UFC Featherweight Title. Another title fight on the card will be Petr Yan v. Jose Aldo for the vacant UFC Bantamweight Title.

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