Welterweight champ Kamaru Usman will defend his belt against #4 Jorge Masvidal for a second time tomorrow, on April 24th. The mixed martial artists first battled July 12, 2020 on fight island where Kamaru Usman easily got the decision victory over Masvidal at UFC 251. Their next fight will take place at the Jacksonville arena and will welcome a sold out crowd for the first time in over a year!
Masvidal accepted the previous fight on just six days notice with no training camp and little time to prepare. He had to endure a vicious weight cut which played a large factor in his lackluster performance. With a full training camp and a familiar enemy, “Gamebred” looks to exact his revenge on the “Nigerian Nightmare”.
Since his fight against Masvidal, Kamaru Usman has already defended his belt against top contender Gilbert Burns. He finished Burns in an impressive fashion at the the beginning of the third round. Kamaru looks sharp as ever and left fans begging for more after his last performance. Usman promises to deliver this Saturday and says he will finish Masvidal.
Usman stands 6’0″, with a 76-inch reach, which is a slight advantage over Masvidal — who measures up to 5’11” and has a 74-inch reach. Both men land high volumes of significant strikes, with Usman having the slight edge at 4.66 and Masvidal at 4.2. Usman absorbs 2.33 significant strikes a minute which is also better than Masvidal’s 3 absorbed. Usman is a -400 favorite to win the fight.
Usman has gotten better each time he’s fought and has already cleaned out most of the division. I predict this fight will be similar to the first Usman/Masvidal matchup, although more strikes are expected to be thrown from both fighters. Usman’s striking may prove to be too much for Masvidal — knocking him out in the third or fourth round. As always in MMA, anything can happen and it doesn’t seem like Gamebred will go down easy.
Saturday’s card also features two other title fights in the women’s division. Zhang Wheili will face Rose Namajunas for the straw weight title which is the co-main event. Valentina Shevchenko will also defend her belt against Jessica Andrade with the flyweight title on the line. With all of this in mind, one thing’s for sure: this is one stacked card and UFC fans won’t want to miss it!