Kamaru Usman punched Jorge Masvidal unconscious in a stunning win to fortify his reputation as MMA’s best fighter

Kamaru Usman UFC champion
Kamaru Usman obliterated Jorge Masvidal. Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC
  • Kamaru Usman knocked Jorge Masvidal out in a welterweight title fight Saturday in Florida.
  • Masvidal was left unconscious on the canvas in the second round, satisfying Usman.
  • Watch the brutal but brilliant win right here.
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Kamaru Usman punched Jorge Masvidal unconscious in a stunning win to fortify his reputation as MMA‘s best fighter Saturday at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.

Usman is unbeaten since making his UFC debut in 2015 and has scored wins over some of the promotion’s best names like Leon Edwards, Demian Maia, Rafael dos Anjos, Tyron Woodley, Colby Covington, and Gilbert Burns.

In July last year on Fight Island, Usman’s first bout in the pandemic era, the Nigerian fighter accepted a late notice bout against Masvidal, beating the Floridian by unanimous decision in Abu Dhabi.

Masvidal always wondered how different the fight would look with a full camp, but at UFC 261 in front of a 15,259 capacity crowd, he found himself separated from his senses in the second round.

“Now, I’m satisfied,” Usman said in a statement sent to Insider. “They said they wanted violence out here in Jacksonville, and I went out there and gave it to them.”

Jorge Masvidal and Kamaru Usman at UFC 261

Masvidal began the bout by fake-running a flying knee at Usman, a maneuver that had yielded a record-breaking five-second knockout over Ben Askren in 2019.

Between strikes from both fighters, Usman sent Masvidal impressions that a takedown attempt would be coming and midway through the round got his first on the board.

Though Masvidal got back to his feet and was the more active striker with 48 shots landing from 69 attempts (69%), Usman earned a 10-9 round because of superior wrestling and success from the top.

-ESPN MMA (@espnmma) April 25, 2021

Then, just 62 seconds into the second round, Usman got his finish.

It was a masterful one-two punch combination that did the damage as Usman took Masvidal’s protecting right hand away by swatting it with his left and then followed up with a fight-finishing straight right – an almighty bang.

Masvidal was out cold before he hit the canvas, but to ensure he got the win, Usman pounded him with big hammer-fists until the referee said it was all over.

And it was. Not just the fight, but any argument that, in the post-Khabib Nurmagomedov era, there is a vacancy as the world’s best MMA fighter. That fighter is Usman.

Check this out:

-FOX Bet (@FOXBet) April 25, 2021

“I’m not a character out there, I’m not an imposter, that’s who I am, and I just had to go out there and stay composed, stay with my fundamentals, and the finish comes,” said Usman after the victory.

Considering his record, his championship status, who he has beaten, and how, Usman may have put his remaining rivals on notice not just because of his latest win, but his comments, as he said: “I’m [still] growing in the sport.”

He added: “I’m just blessed to be at this present time and moment. It was a sweet one, it’s up there. If you look at the knockouts now that I’m putting together, that one’s up there for sure. That’s what I wanted to do.

“I said I’m so far ahead of these guys, I’m coming around and lapping these guys on the track, I’m coming around with a vengeance and I had to go out there and put the nails in that coffin and I did.”

In defeat, Masvidal’s pro-MMA record retreats to 35 wins (16 knockouts, two submissions, and 17 decisions) against 15 losses (two knockouts, two submissions, and 11 decisions).

With the victory, Usman advances his record to 19 wins (nine knockouts, one submission, and nine decisions) against one loss – a submission defeat in 2013, two years before his first UFC bout.

He will likely fight Colby Covington next – a rematch from a fifth-round knockout win in 2019. “It’s the fight to make,” the UFC boss Dana White told reporters at a post-event press conference.