After a chaotic weekend for Dana White and the UFC, there is a new main event for UFC 251 where Jorge Masvidal will meet champion Kamaru Usman for the welterweight title. The change comes after the original opponent for Usman, Gilbert Burns tested positive for COVID-19 late Friday night.
With the UFC having to deal with many changes and moving parts to make the fight happen, UFC President Dana White joined SportsCenter on Sunday and discussed how everything came about to keep the PPV event intact. While the fight has been officially announced by the UFC, White explained the final hurdles that remain before the fight does take place.
“Them and everyone surrounding them have to test negative for the Coronavirus, then we get on a plane, we fly to Abu Dhabi, and we all have to continue to test negative for the Coronavirus for the fight to happen.”
After having some issues with trying to make the fight between Masvidal and Usman happen earlier this year, White explained how the UFC shifted from Burns to Masvidal, saying they just had to make it happen.
“If you look at the 20-year history this kind of stuff happens when you get in negotiations for fights, these things happen. Gilbert Burns has been on a tear, was consistently fighting and wanted to continue to fight and he was the number one contender so Gilbert Burns made sense. Obviously Masvidal has become a massive star over the last year-and-a-half and that’s the fight the people want to see, so when Burns fell out we got in a room and figured Masvidal out.”
Without a doubt there was work to be done between Dana White, the UFC, and Jorge Masvidal and his team but after it all, the fight that many have been calling for between Usman and Masvidal is now set to take place at UFC 251.
Getting his first title opportunity of his professional career, Masvidal will look to capitalize on a resurgence in his career which includes him capturing the ‘BMF’ title last November.