JORGE MASVIDAL’S UFC 251 bid has been rocked by coach Mike Brown testing positive for coronavirus – meaning the cornerman cannot go to Fight Island.
Masvidal, 35, aims to dethrone welterweight champ Kamaru Usman at the Abu Dhabi venue this Saturday.
But long-serving American Top Team coach Brown and fellow ATT cornerman Gabriel de Oliveira were found to have Covid-19 in the UFC’s latest round of tests.
Brown later posted a message saying: “I’m OK, (tested) positive. I won’t be in Abu Dhabi.”
He was due to guide Yank Masvidal in his short-notice title shot against Usman, 33, who is also the Ultimate Fighter 21 winner.
Now it is unclear who will be Masvidal’s cornerman for his big night.
Masvidal himself was only called in to fight when Usman’s original opponent Gilbert Burns tested positive for coronavirus last Friday.
He then got the all-clear and jetted off to Abu Dhabi on a private jet hired by his First Round Management team.
Masvidal and Nigerian-American Usman can certainly train in exotic surroundings, including working out on a beach as an octagon has been built on the sand.
An arena has also been specially built but the bout will still be behind closed doors, just like the UFC’s recent events in Florida and Las Vegas.
Meanwhile, De Oliveira’s positive test ruled him out of joining the UFC’s charter flight from Las Vegas to the Midlde East.