MIXED MARTIAL ARTS

Miami’s Jorge Masvidal motivated for UFC bout: ‘There are a lot of punks ranked above me’

 
 
Miami's Jorge Masvidal (top) defeats Eric Reynolds of Tampa by submission in the third round during the Bellator Fighting Championship XII at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood on June 20, 2009.
Miami's Jorge Masvidal (top) defeats Eric Reynolds of Tampa by submission in the third round during the Bellator Fighting Championship XII at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood on June 20, 2009.
Pedro Portal / El Nuevo Herald

Jorge Masvidal has been a household name in the South Florida mixed-martial arts scene the past decade. The son of Cuban and Peruvian parents has an impressive 24-7 record during that span. Now the 28-year-old looks to impress when he makes his second appearance in the big leagues of the sport: UFC.

Masvidal faces unbeaten Michael Chiesa (9-0-0) on Saturday at UFC on FOX 8 at Seattle’s KeyArena in Chiesa’s home state of Washington. It’s an important battle in the lightweight division against the winner of The Ultimate Fighter 15. Masvidal knows a win could equal a huge step toward a title shot.

“My only mission is to win the belt, and fighting this guy could get me that opportunity,” Masvidal said. “I’m not here to be able to post on Facebook that I fight in the UFC, and impress a few people. I want to be the best that ever did it.

“There are a lot of punks ranked above me because they’ve fought in the UFC longer, but they’re nothing but a bunch of divas. I’m fighting a good fighter to prove I am the best, and that I will have that belt around my waist.”

In Masvidal’s last fight, his UFC debut, he won a three-round unanimous decision against Tim Means. He was satisfied with the win but disappointed that the bout went to a decision.

“Getting a win was definitely important,” Masvidal said. “I wanted to get stoppage, but it didn’t work out that way. This time I need to keep hustling and get the stoppage.”

Masvidal knows UFC brass wasn’t overly impressed with his first fight, so his job is to make sure he catches their attention and bring him back for more.

“I know they weren’t in love with the performance,” Masvidal said. “That’s why I’ve been working harder than ever. This has been the best training camp in my life. I’m making sure I get in there and smoke this guy.”

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