UFC heavyweight vet delivers brutal KO win in bare-knuckle debut at Jorge Masvidal’s promotion

Jorge Masvidal may not be planning to compete in MMA or boxing anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean he’s not interested in staying involved in combat sports.

At a recent event in Florida, former UFC heavyweight Roy Nelson made a triumphant return to the sport with a first-round knockout win against Dillon Cleckler.

The bout was held under Masvidal’s promotion, Gamebred Fighting Championship, and while the action was brief. Both fighters showed a willingness to inflict damage.

Although Cleckler showed impressive striking skills early on, Nelson’s powerful right hand proved to be the difference. Sending his opponent to the canvas and prompting the referee to stop the fight.

For Roy, the victory ended a five-fight losing streak that had stretched back to 2017. This marked his first win since Bellator 183 in September of that year. The 46-year-old fighter was released from his Bellator contract in October 2020, and turns 47 this June.

Jorge Masvidal takes on the role of a promoter

Masvidal recently declared his retirement from MMA, but he is already thinking about his next big venture in life. Which he believes is promoting combat sports.

The former UFC fighter, who had 22 fights in the promotion, is currently involved in promoting boxing and bare-knuckle MMA through his brand, Gamebred Promotions. He is also working with the MMA promotion, iKON FC.

Jorge Masvidal speaking to his father

With his fighting days behind him, Masvidal thinks he can now concentrate fully on being a promoter without the distractions of training and fighting.

“Since I don’t fight and I’m not at the gym four, five hours every day giving it all I got, I’m giving [promoting] all I got,” said Masvidal in a recent interview with ESPN MMA.

“I’m so involved in this. I’m so submerged in this. It’s what I’ve been doing for the last three years and what I’ll be doing for the next 20 years. Just promoting the fights, and giving a piece of myself back to the fans in the form of violence. But not me getting in the cage, but me orchestrating the violence,” he added.

Jorge hung up his gloves after a unanimous decision loss to Gilbert Burns at UFC 287 last month. This was his fourth straight defeat against top welterweights.

Despite having the desire to continue competing, he found it challenging to carry on after being a pro fighter since 2003 and being on the UFC roster for almost a decade. While he still seems to have a fighting spirit, Masvidal may be held back by his age.

What do you think about Jorge’s brand-new promotion? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.

Sami Haider

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Sami Haider is a UFC/boxing journalist who connects combat sports to pop culture. His deep passion for the UFC started in 2018, triggered by the UFC 229: Khabib vs. McGregor fight. He is a passionate writer who has a profound love for the sport and the skills that are used in it. Through his work, Sami aspires to connect combat sportsmen and their enthusiastic fans.


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