Masvidal vows to ‘break Usman’s bones’, issues ‘throat-slit’ gesture as welterweights prepare for UFC 261 headliner

Jorge Masvidal was in a menacing mood as he detailed the violent punishment he is planning to dish out to Kamaru Usman when they share the octagon again at UFC 261 in Florida on Saturday night.

Masvidal and undisputed welterweight king Usman will run it back at the top of a stacked card at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, as a full house of fans returns for the first time since the onset of the pandemic. 

This time around, Miami fan favorite Usman has vowed he will be the one having his hand raised.

“You can hear it yourself, see it yourself – these guys want violence,” Masvidal said in front of the fans at Thursday’s press conference, MMA Fighting reported

“They don’t cheer for me because I’m so good looking or the food that I eat, nothing, that’s not why they cheer for me. They cheer for me because I give everybody their hard-earned money.

“I come in here to perform and bring the violence that they crave, and that’s the only reason why I got all these fans behind me.”

UFC boss Dana White has declared that Masvidal will have “no excuses” if he fails to overcome 'The Nigerian Nightmare' this Saturday, having stepped into their first fight in Abu Dhabi last July at just six days’ notice.

Usman won that contest in formidable fashion with a unanimous decision victory.

This time, ‘Gamebred’ has had the benefit of a full camp – and pledged that would make all the difference.  

“I didn’t get the broken nose, you did,” claimed Masvidal of the pair’s first encounter.  

“I’m going to bust your face up, break more bones than last time. Remember this face.”

Usman, 33, has emerged as one of MMA’s most dominant forces, going unbeaten in 13 visits to the UFC octagon and holding the all-time record for consecutive wins at 170lbs.

Saturday night will be the fourth defense of the welterweight title he won by defeating Tyron Woodley in March of 2019.

Usman was dismissive of Masvidal’s threats, replying that he was already nursing a broken nose heading into their first fight, rather than suffering it at the hands of ‘Street Jesus’.  

“Let’s be honest. You got 14 losses in your career, seven in the UFC, you’re 3-3 in your last six, you are sitting there today because I chose you,” Usman said.

“I’m coming around the track and you’re the first guy that I’m about to lap. Period.”  

Masvidal already has one unofficial title to his name as the UFC’s ‘BMF’ – an accolade he earned by defeating Nate Diaz in 2019 – but Usman was derisory of the belt displayed by the former backyard brawler on stage on Thursday.

“There’s three belts, three shiny belts here. This is what’s important. Not that piece of sh*t,” Usman goaded, referring to the three title fights on the bill this weekend – the other two involving clashes for women’s strawweight and flyweight gold.  

Despite the barbs, Usman suggested that Saturday night was purely “business”.

“I didn’t feel like I broke his will [last time]. On Saturday night, once I break his will, absolutely I’ll be satisfied.

“No, it’s not personal at all. If he’s making it personal, that’s on him. For me, it’s not personal. It’s all about business. He’s that next guy that I’ve picked.”

Purely business or not, the pair’s staredown was nonetheless intense as Masvidal issued a menacing ‘throat-slit’ gesture to his rival.

On the business front, Masvidal, 36, has used his latest foray into the spotlight to launch his own bare-knuckle MMA promotion.

Famed for his backyard brawls with the legendary Kimbo Slice at the outset of his career, Masvidal is teaming up with hip-hop artist Anuel AA for the venture, with the promotion named 'Gamebred Fighting Championship'.

“[Anuel AA and I] have teamed up to bring you the most vicious fights we could think of Bare Knuckle MMA,” wrote Masvidal in a social media post.

“That’s right no gloves same rules and the first fight will be in Miami on June 25.”

Masvidal’s promotion has reportedly signed a one-year broadcast deal with Bare Knuckle TV to show its content.

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