The world doubted Kamaru Usman en route to UFC 261 in Jacksonville, Florida.
”The Nigerian Nightmare” was facing journeyman turned MMA populist cultural anti-hero in Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal (35-15-0).
— The Fight Bubble (@thefightbubble) April 25, 2021
Also, the deck was stacked.
Masvidal is a South Florida son rapidly becoming a SoFlo legend. His early unsanctioned bare knuckle exploits, made infamous by a Kimbo Slice co-sign, place him in high Floridian esteem.
Couple that with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis attending the weigh in to officially open Florida to a full capacity house and you have the makings of a set up.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) April 25, 2021
However, Usman (19-1-0) showed up. Sans the Nigerian war paint he normally dons on weigh in day, he was focused.
When the fight began on Saturday, Usman was crisp on his feet with a lot of pop in his hands. The normal wrestle heavy game-plan was toppled with the hands and Usman delivered a vicious overhand right KO that flattened Masvidal for the first time in his UFC career.
— BetOnline.ag (@betonline_ag) April 25, 2021
The win was sign that Usman has entered the rare air of welterweight supremacy. Usman extended his winning streak to 18 fights. He hasn’t suffered a defeat since May 2013.
Usman became the second fighter in UFC history to start 14-0 with the promotion. Anderson Silva also accomplished the feat.
Usman’s 14-fight UFC winning streak is the longest active streak in the company.
Usman’s 14-fight UFC winning streak tied for the second-longest in company history behind Silva (16).
Usman’s 14-fight UFC winning streak at welterweight is the longest active streak in the division and the longest overall in divisional history.
With Colby Covington queued up as his next opponent per Dana White, Usman is just setting up old foes now to cement his legacy.
But it is clear, Kamaru Usman is becoming thE star to watch in the UFC.