When Gunnar Nelson was forced out of his UFC Liverpool co-main event showdown with Neil Magny, sixth-ranked UFC welterweight Jorge Masvidal offered to step in and replace him. He only asked that this short-notice bout with Magny be contested at a 180-pound catchweight, as he wouldn’t be able to make the welterweight division’s 170-pound limit in time for the card.
“My manager told me about [Nelson’s withdrawal,] and he was like ‘hey man, here’s your chance to smash Magny,’ cause he knows I don’t like Magny one bit,” Masvidal told BJPenn.com’s Jason Kindschy on Tuesday. “So he offered it to me, and he was like ‘what do you think?’ We’ll make it at a catchweight, cause I’m a little heavier right now.”
“We offered it to the UFC at 180 [pounds] and they loved it,” Masvidal continued. “They thought we’d make a great addition to the card, so now they just have to run it by Magny. I’m almost positive the answer’s going to be no, because this situation has happened with him in the past, so I’d surprised if he took it.”
As Masvidal said, the UFC was apparently on board with this plan. Initially, it also seemed that Magny was interested in the idea.
A ranked opponent, hell yea I'll fight him.
— Neil Magny (@NeilMagny) May 1, 2018
According to Masvidal, however, Magny’s team ultimately shut this offer down.
“They just said no,” Masvidal said in a Tuesday evening text message, claiming that Magny’s team had rejected the bout.
This claim from Masvidal seems to line up with a Tuesday night Instagram post from Magny.
“It’s better to be prepared for an opportunity and not have one, than to have an opportunity and not be prepared for it,” Magny said in his post.
Does a 180-pound showdown between Neil Magny and Jorge Masvidal interest you? Join the conversation in the comments section.
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 5/2/2018.