Jorge Masvidal (23-7 MMA, 0-0 UFC) has been around the block too many times to blab on about the honor of competing in this promotion or that promotion. It’s just fighting and a paycheck.
And a more regular paycheck, if Masvidal is right about the UFC.
After nine years on the regional and international circuit, he’s graduated to the octagon. On Saturday, he meets Tim Means (18-3-1 MMA, 2-0 UFC) on the FX-televised preliminary-card of UFC on FOX 7, which takes place at HP Pavilion in San Jose, Calif.
“That’s the biggest thing I’m excited about – that I’m going to be able to compete four or five times a year,” he told MMAjunkie.com Radio (www.mmajunkie.com/radio).
Masvidal, who recently relocated to Coconut Creek, Fla., to be closer to his longtime gym, American Top Team, regularly griped about intermittent paydays while competing under several promotional banners. To him, it always seemed like fights came on short notice, or not at all.
He still gets noticed more for the backyard fights that made Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson a YouTube star than the ones in his professional career.
“People are like, ‘Did you used to have long hair? Man, I love those fights!’” Masvidal said. “I’m like, ‘Alright, cool.’”
But now, “Gamebred” has graduated to the industry-leader in MMA, which swallowed the roster of his former home, Strikeforce. He’s already thinking about the money he could earn with regular bookings.
“As a matter of fact, my calculations is done off bonuses, I’m doing my math with the bonus included,” he said.
And though the settings around him are different, Masvidal hasn’t changed much about his preparation. He doesn’t watch tape, preferring to let his coaches tell him what to do. He prefers a standup fight, and practices boxing relentlessly.
“At one point another, I’m going to hit this guy really f—ing hard in the body,” he said. “I’m going to test his will right there. I know he’s going to be going for his little clinching and kneeing, but I’m going to make it like a good old boxing match.”
What he won’t do is showboat, which he’s done in the past.
“For this fight, I don’t think I’ll be doing that too much, because it just doesn’t pay off, and I don’t think people like seeing it too much,” he said. “I think it’s fun, watching a fighter do good defense. But for the most part, people want to see a brawl.”
Masvidal is happy to oblige if it keeps him off the mat.
“You guys know I can’t tap a keg,” he said.
It looks like Means might be in the same boat. The Albuquerque, N.M.-based fighter has earned 13 of his 18 wins by way of TKO or KO. He’s won both of his fights in the UFC and most recently stopped Justin Salas at UFC on FX 3 this past June. A third bout, which was scheduled against Abel Trujillo at UFC on FOX 5, was canceled when he slipped in the sauna prior to weigh-ins and knocked himself unconscious.
In his debut, Masvidal plans to do that for Means – the old-fashioned way.
“4/20? Somebody’s getting smoked,” he said.
For more on UFC on FOX 7, stay tuned to the UFC Rumors section of the site.
MMAjunkie.com Radio broadcasts Monday-Friday at noon ET (9 a.m. PT) live from Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino’s Race & Sports Book. The show is hosted by “Gorgeous” George Garcia, MMAjunkie.com lead staff reporter John Morgan and producer Brian “Goze” Garcia. For more information or to download past episodes, go to www.mmajunkie.com/radio.