Dominance MMA founder Ali Abdelaziz believes Kamaru Usman is the prime mover behind the forthcoming rematch with Jorge Masvidal.
Despite having previously loathed Jorge Masvidal, Ali Abdelaziz agrees that the Miami native is one of the biggest draws in the UFC. In an interview with Aaron Bronsteter, the manager alluded to Gamebred's ascension to fame, despite him losing three of his last six outings.
"Listen, Masvidal is 3-3 in his last six. This is a fact, right? But, Masvidal has found a way to become a superstar. The man is a superstar, he is. He brings eyeballs, right? But also Kamaru really truly believes, with Trevor Wittman, they feel they can go out there and put him away. I think the biggest fight to make is Masvidal vs Kamaru..."
Jorge Masvidal took the initial meeting on short notice (six days prior to UFC 251). The fourth-ranked welterweight has been campaigning for a rematch ever since, citing his short notice appointment. To settle the dispute, The Nigerian Nightmare gave the nod to the rematch, according to Ali Abdelaziz.
"[Masvidal] has a built-in excuse. He said, 'I took the fight on six days' notice. I cut twenty pounds in six days.' Let's give the man a shot, right?" said Ali Abdelaziz.
"Kamaru put him there" - Ali Abdelaziz hails the champ for agreeing to the rematch
Since the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, UFC 261 is set to be the first event with a live audience of 15,000 people in attendance.
Ali Abdelaziz is of the notion that Jorge Masvidal has been summoned by the promotion merely as an element of amusement for the packed crowd at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena.
"But realistically, he is there because Kamaru put him there. I was in the room with Dana and Kamaru talked. Dana blessed [the fight]. Dana White thinks Kamaru is the greatest welterweight of all time. I think he is too. Masvidal is there to put on a great show for the fans but we know what's going to happen... [Kamaru] has to go out there and do what he does the best," added Ali Abdelaziz.
Abdelaziz's claims indicate that the champion might be aiming to churn out another dominant victory this weekend.