Kamaru Usman added to his all-time great resumé at UFC 258 when he knocked out top contender Gilbert Burns to retain his UFC welterweight championship. Now, Usman has his eyes set on a man who's already beaten, Jorge Masvidal — Fightful has you covered on what the Vegas betting odds have to say in the potential rematch between Usman and Masvidal as well as other news from around the world of MMA.
Kamaru Usman Opens As Sizeable Favorite Over Jorge Masvidal Rematch
Rewind to UFC 251, newly crowned "BMF" champion Jorge Masvidal stepped in to challenge UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman on Fight Island on less than a week's notice.
The Nigerian-born UFC champion would successfully retain his title after taking a unanimous decison over the aforementioned Masvidal.
Fast forward to this past weekend and Usman would again successfully retain his UFC title, this time knocking out top contender Gilbert Burns. After the fight, Usman would callout "Fake Jesus", Jorge Masvidal and asked for a rematch...this time, promising to finish Masvidal.
The oddsmakers at Bet Online, don't see the perspective rematch going very different from the pair's first encounter, having Usman a hefty -300 betting favorite while the "BMF" champion comes back as a +250 underdog.
UFC 258 Prelims Ratings Show Decline From UFC 257 Prelims
The prelims leading into UFC 258 showed a dip in ratings from the prelims of UFC 257.
An average of 794,000 viewers saw the prelims on ESPN which were headlined by Anthony Hernandez submitting Rodolfo Vieira in what was the biggest upset of the evening.
The 794,000 average was a decline from the 1.43 million viewers that brought in the prelims of UFC 257.
It's worth noting that the UFC 258 prelims were still the most-watched sports show on cable tv for that night.
Curtis Blaydes Plans To "Clean Out The Division", Expects Stipe Miocic To Beat Francis Ngannou
UFC heavyweight contender Curtis Blaydes plans to take care of business at UFC Vegas 19, where he stands across the octagon from Derrick Lewis during the evening's main event.
Riding a 9-1 record in his last 10 outings, Blaydes plans to clean out the heavyweight division on his way to a UFC heavyweight title fight against who he perceives as the GOAT, Stipe Miocic.
"I just roll my eyes," Blaydes told MMA Fighting when talking about the current state of the UFC's heavyweight division.
“I’m not old so I’m not in a rush so I’ll get there eventually. Honestly, it’s not even a guarantee that Jon will take the fight cause I heard he also has his eyes on the winner of the Israel [Adesanya] versus [Jan] Blachowicz fight. If he’s got his eyes on that one, he’s not all in on this heavyweight matchup so it’s not a guarantee. I’m not worried about it. If it does happen, I guess we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.
“Worst case, I’ve always iterated, if I have to clean out the division, I will. I will do that," Blaydes said. "I have a family at home that I provide for so the more active I am, the better for them. The ultimate goal is the belt but we’ll get there.”
Former UFC Fighter Paul Kelly Announces Retirement
15-year MMA veteran Paul Kelly announced his retirement from the sport, Thursday.
Kelly, 36, is best-known for being Donald "Cowboy" Cerrone's first fight in the UFC at UFC 126 in 2011.
The eight-fight UFC veteran took to Instagram to make the announcement.