UFC 251 results, highlights: Kamaru Usman dominates Jorge Masvidal with strong wrestling to retain title
Usman suffocated Masvidal with against the fence and on the ground with his gameplan to get the decision win
Jorge Masvidal stepped up on six day’s notice to face off with UFC welterweight champion on Kamaru Usman, so there’s a reason he’s the BMF champion. But Usman showed his championship skills over five rounds, neutralizing the always-dangerous Masvidal on his way to a wide unanimous decision victory in the main event of UFC 251 from Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
Masvidal came out strong in the opening round, throwing flurries of fast strikes and popping up from an early Usman takedown. But Usman took over the fight from the second round on, using a grueling clinch game to neutralize the striking threat of Masvidal. Without the benefit of a full camp, it was clear the pace and style of the fight had wore Masvidal down and he had less and less offense to offer as the minutes ticked by.
The level of dominance shown by Usman can be summed up in two simple post-fight statistics. Usman landed 263 strikes to just 88 for Masvidal. And more than 10 of the 25 minutes of the fight were spent with Usman having control of the clinch. The final scorecards read 50-45, 59-46 and 49-46, all for Usman.
Following his victory, Usman seemed slightly disappointed in not getting the finish, but gave Masvidal credit.
“Gamebred is the biggest, baddest dude out there right now,” Usman said. “I had to change gears to face him on six day’s notice. I trained for Gilbert [Burns]. I had a totally different gameplan. That’s no excuse. Gameberd is tough.”
CBS Sports was with you throughout UFC 251 with updates, results and highlights. Relive all the action with our fight card recap below.