Jorge Masvidal promised Kamaru Usman he would earn a rematch after a convincing victory for the welterweight champion at UFC 251.
Usman dominated Masvidal after losing the first round and was given a unanimous win by all three judges, 50-45, 50-45, 49-46.
Masvidal accepted the clash at ‘Fight Island’ on six days notice, but went the distance against Usman despite appearing sluggish for much of the fight. After months of feuding, Usman and Masvidal finally met in the octagon on Yas Island, but the duo immediately buried the hatchet after their fight.
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Masvidal and Usman shook hands seconds after the bell sounded and then cameras picked up what Gamebred said to the champion as they waited for the scorecards to be read out.
‘We’re going to run it back, I’ll get some victories and we’ll run it back,’ Masvidal said to his rival. Usman was under pressure to get a win after the amount of hype Masvidal received heading into their showdown and the Nigerian Nightmare praised his opponent for stepping up at late notice.
‘Gambred is the biggest, baddest dude out there right now and I had to switch gears to prepare for him on six weeks notice,’ he said.
‘I had to make a mental switch, I prepared for Gilbert I had a completely different gameplay. Gambred is tough and he showed it out there. I think Jorge is tough. I’ve always said it. Jorge is a tough guy and I give him credit for that. I’m just levels better.’
While the main event was clear cut, there was controversy in the featherweight title fight as Alex Volkanovski edged a razor-thin battle with Max Holloway to retain his title.
Many onlookers had Holloway in the victory column and the three judges were split on the decision for Volkanovski, returning 48-47, 47-48, 48-47 scorecards.
Petr Yan became the bantamweight champion by beating UFC legend Jose Aldo in brutal fashion in the fifth round.
Aldo and Yan had both taken punishment, but seasoned bantamweight took charge in the final two rounds and Aldo may not hang up his gloves after his six defeat in his last nine fights.
Fight of the Night went to strawweights Rose Namajunas and Jessica Andrade after their three-round war, while Scottish star Davey Grant’s epic knockout of Jiri Prochazka earned him a $50,000 bonus.
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