Las Vegas, NV — Jorge Masvidal has ascended to superstar status within the UFC. Joining a rather exclusive club, Masvidal (35-13) has become a needle mover, something that was cemented when he captured the BMF belt at UFC 244 back in November.
Life has become different for ‘Gamebred’ as a result. “Very different. Very very different,” he told media outlets including Cageside Press on Thursday, at the UFC 246 media day.
Case in point: Masvidal is launching his own line of Mezcal. “And before you ask, I’m an owner in the company.” Not just promoting, in other words. He’d planned to have samples on hand, but apparently the UFC but the kibosh on that plan.
Conor McGregor has Proper 12, Masvidal now has his own Mezcal. But look no further than Masvidal being on hand at the UFC 246 media day, with his own press conference — at a card he’s not even fighting on. Needle mover indeed.
So what does the future entail? Perhaps putting the BMF belt on the line, one-off or not.
“You guys know I’m a gambling man. So, somebody wants this one right here [the BMF belt], you’ve got to put something up, [some] collateral. Something that makes me go ‘yeah, that makes it worth me putting this up,'” Masvidal said when asked about defending the title. “Because I’m not just going to put this up for somebody to win and me not win nothing after I baptize him. You’ve got to give me something after I end your ass.”
While the title of “baddest motherf*cker” was never designed to be an ongoing thing, fans certainly took to the idea. And for Masvidal, the reward for defending, the collateral he speaks of, doesn’t necessarily need to be monetary.
“It could be financial, it could be many other things,” he suggested. “Maybe certain individuals don’t ever get to speak or do an interview if I whup their ass the right way. Type of sh*t like that. I work for the community, so I know for a lot of us, certain people shouldn’t be talking no more.”
If you ask UFC President Dana White, the next move for Masvidal should be a shot against welterweight champion Kamaru Usman. ‘Gamebred’ doesn’t see it that way though.
“I want to say it’s not the right move. Usman’s a fight, Conor’s obviously flirted with the idea of fighting with me. And if me and Conor goes in the octagon, what happens? It’s one of the biggest fights in history,” Masvidal predicted. “Just by math. What Conor’s been doing, the last couple fights that I’ve had — the engagement, the PPVs, I broke records with ESPN. So obviously it’s a formula for success.”
“Somebody will always have the belt at 170lbs. It doesn’t really matter if it’s Kamaru or not,” he continued. “Conor’s a bigger fight. Now if Conor doesn’t do his job or Conor doesn’t want to fight after this fight, then we’re going to take Usman’s head off.”
Asked if he’d prefer McGregor over a title fight, Masvidal reiterated “Yes, for a fact. We smash up Conor, then go embarrass this actor of Usman.”
The time frame of his return could line up well for either opponent. “Ideally could be April, could be June. Then after that we’re going to get the ball rolling hard and fast.” The only reason he wants to wait at all, added Masvidal, is to ensure his hands are good, with no nagging injuries.
With Usman having fought last month, and McGregor fighting this weekend, somewhere in the April to June range sounds reasonable.
As for rival Colby Covington, it’s not a fight Masvidal is interested in. “It’s not on my radar. He got his jaw broken by the guy I’m about to baptize.”
So McGregor, then, and if not, Usman. Enjoy it while it lasts. Asked how much longer he has left in the sport, Jorge Masvidal had an immediate response: “Three years, my brother. Three years counting this one.”
Watch the full UFC 246 media day press conference with Jorge Masvidal above!