While he may have ridiculed his abilities in the past, UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman is viewing Jorge Masvidal as his best opponent yet.
Usman defends his title against bitter rival Masvidal in the main event of UFC 251 taking place tomorrow night in Yas Island, Abu Dhabi. With things being hostile between the pair, a number of insults have flown each other’s way the last few months.
Usman, in particular, has labeled Masvidal a journeyman, mocked his professional record and didn’t seem to rate him highly as a fighter in general. But when it comes down to the fight tomorrow night, he is going into it ranking “Gamebred” as the best opponent he has faced yet.
“He’s the best out of each and every one of them,” Usman said during virtual media day on Thursday when asked where Masvidal ranked compared to all his previous opponents. “He’s the best. He’s the next guy in front of me. He’s the toughest guy in front of me, so I don’t take him lightly.
“I’m going out there with all [those] thoughts, the thought that he’s the best opponent that I have faced today and I have to go out there and treat him accordingly.”
Usman Prepared For Masvidal
As for his previous comments on Masvidal, “the Nigerian Nightmare” may have just been trying to sell the fight as he went on to add that he does rate his skills.
That said, he remains confident of getting the victory.
“With Jorge, he’s a talented fighter like I’ve said,” Usman added. “He’s good. He’s no slouch. I don’t dismiss his skills at all. I think he’s a tough competitor and there’s a reason he’s been around for so long.
“Yes, he’s had his ups and downs in his career but at this moment, he’s the biggest, baddest dude next in line for me to face. And I’m fully prepared.”
You can watch the full virtual media day scrum from Usman below: