Usman and Masvidal appear to be on a collision course. The two got into a heated exchange on Radio Row during Super Bowl week. UFC president Dana White revealed plans to book “The Nigerian Nightmare” against “Gamebred” for International Fight Week in July.
Usman Explains How Feud With Masvidal Became Personal
Usman recently spoke to MMAFighting.com‘s Damon Martin. During the interview, the welterweight king blamed Masvidal’s manager, Abe Kawa, for stirring the pot.
“That’s all from Abe [Kawa] that’s doing all that and I understand it, I get it. It’s marketing for them. They see this as an opportunity to really grow his brand. He’s had 18 years to be in this position and it hasn’t happened. Now they’re seeing this as an opportunity and they’re running with it big time. But really it’s his management that’s causing all this, that’s saying all these things and tweeting all these things.”
With that said, Usman is still taking things personal because he feels Masvidal also shares blame for letting his manager cross the line.
“Yeah, it’s getting personal because when you allow your management to tweet certain things for you, to say certain things or certain words to people, you’re condoning that as well,” Usman said. “So yeah, it’s turned into more of a personal situation.”
Usman is coming off a successful welterweight title defense back in Dec. 2019. He defeated Colby Covington via fifth-round TKO. It was the first time Usman put his 170-pound gold on the line.
Masvidal is riding a three-fight winning streak. In that span, he’s beaten Nate Diaz, Ben Askren, and Darren Till. All three victories ended in a knockout or TKO. He has never received a shot at a UFC championship.