Respect Between The Two Baddest

UFC News

While Diaz has been a main event fixture and a major fan favorite throughout his UFC career, Masvidal has been more of an indie darling — a fighter who has been respected by both his peers and the hardcore set, but who has never had that mainstream, crossover appeal.

Until now.

“The purists have been watching me since Japan, since Strikeforce, since all these events that are no longer with us that are defunct already that your boy traveled through those events and made waves,” said Masvidal, who logged appearances with BodogFIGHT, Strikeforce, World Victory Road and Bellator, amongst others, before making his Octagon debut against Tim Means on April 20, 2013. “It’s crazy that I’ve had the hardcores and then in one year, I’ve brought in the casuals.

“It’s funny to see a casual say I’m an overnight hit and I just watch him get chewed up by all my fans that have been there forever,” he added with a laugh.

In a sport where post-fight conversations often center on where a combatant fits in the pantheon of all-time greats or how the current pound-for-pound rankings line up, Saturday’s event takes one of those nebulous concepts everyone talks about and puts it on the marquee, with two deserving competitors vying for a one-off title that will be presented by Hollywood superstar Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson.

And Diaz and Masvidal clearly bought in long before this bout or the BMF title were ever a reality.

“My brother used to show me Royce Gracie taking out everybody in the UFC and we’d be like, ‘This is the baddest m*****f***** right here!’” Diaz said, beginning a recollection of past holders of the title he and Masvidal are set to battle for this weekend that included Mike Tyson and Rickson Gracie. “I think it’s already set it stone: I’m the baddest m*****f***** and he’s the runner-up; we’re the guys.

“The whole company is saying that the winner of this is the baddest m*****f***** that they’ve seen on their roster in the years of the company running, the history of the company,” added Masvidal. “I don’t think I could elaborate on that any more.

“I’m the baddest m*****f***** there was. That’s what it says on the belt — BMF. Sheesh.”

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