Jorge Masvidal explains what surprised him about UFC 261 loss to Kamaru Usman

Kamaru Usman Jorge Masvidal

Jorge Masvidal has revealed his new-found respect for Kamaru Usman and hopes the pair can run it back for a third time in the future.

The Nigerian-born American successfully defended his UFC welterweight title against Masvidal in the main event of UFC 261. 

Usman stuck to his gameplan, methodically picking Masvidal apart with powerful and precise punches from distance. 

"Gamebred" got too complacent, which allowed the champion to start to find a home for his arsenal of strikes.  

Moments after Masvidal smirked when Usman missed with a wild swing, Usman dropped Masvidal to the canvas with a right hand bomb before finishing him with ground-and-pound at 1:02 of the second round.

And "BMF" champion Masvidal admitted he was impressed with the way Usman went about his business. 

"I look at it, and I’m like 'Wow, perfect timing,'" Masvidal said to Ariel Helwani. "That misleading – I thought he was going in for a shot, and when I realized it wasn’t a shot, it was too late. I was throwing my check left hook, but it was already too late. I read the information wrong, so he sold it to me beautifully, and that’s why he got those results.”

"In that moment right there, I am a fan because I love the sport so much, and it was just beautiful technique," he added.

Usman, 33, entered his fourth title defence coming off a third-round TKO win over Gilbert Burns in February at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Despite this, he been considered by some to be a boring fighter. 

But UFC president Dana White believes his performances over his last couple of fights have well and truly silenced those critics.

White confirmed Usman will face another rematch against Colby Covington later this year, whom he defeated in the fifth round of their title fight at UFC 245 in December 2019.

As for Masvidal, it's back to the drawing board for the Miami native. However, the 36-year-old insists that he is far from finished. 

"There were definitely some bad moments and some good moments that came out of that fight,” he concluded. “I’m just ready for what’s next, you know?

"I’m 36 years old. I still feel good. I still can push myself in the gym and not be overwhelmed, even by the young guys, so why not give it another run, you know?"

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