Gregory Payan/Associated Press
As Jorge Masvidal continues to work on a contract for his next fight, he’s already found a sparring partner on Twitter.
Following a tweet in which the welterweight fighter called out UFC’s “white knights” who comment on the sport while Masvidal works on getting a raise, heavyweight Daniel Cormier has begun firing back.
Cormier, who serves as an analyst for UFC, opened up to ESPN’s Ariel Helwani in a video posted Monday (h/t MMA Junkie’s Simon Samano):
“I never said just ‘fight’, but [Masvidal], when he says current or former fighters, and he said you haven’t been doing it as long as me? No, I haven’t. ‘Or like me’? What does ‘or like me’ mean? Had as much success?
“If he’s talking about me, I’ve done it like him, if not better. Not just him, I’ve done it better than most people in the world, so I think maybe he wasn’t talking about me. If he was, it just doesn’t work. Maybe he’s talking about those others guys, because that part of ‘or like me’ doesn’t work for me. I haven’t done it as long, but in the time I have done it, I’ve done it better than just about anybody who’s done it, if not better than anybody that has ever done it.”
Masvidal’s contract dispute isn’t happening in a vacuum, either. Both he and Jon Jones, with whom he shares an agent, have gone public with their grievances against the company.
Jones aired out a number of his issues with UFC boss Dana White after contract negotiations broke down when discussing a potential super-fight between Jones and Francis Ngannou at heavyweight.
Cormier has maintained these discussions are more likely to be resolved behind closed doors than argued in public, leading Masvidal to chirp back.
“That’s the problem, especially because him and Jones are managed by the same person, so if they’re taking the same approach, they’re vastly different people,” Cormier said. “Jones has been champion for so long, he’s done so many things, he’s got so much more financial security, and ultimately the UFC has to come to the table because you’re holding the belt. … As long as you have the belt, people got to come back to you to talk to you. You’re the champ. I do believe [Masvidal] misses a big opportunity.”
Cormier has only participated in four events since 2018 with his last bout, a technical knockout loss to Stipe Miocic, taking place at UFC 241 in August 2019.