UFC: Kamaru Usman Considering Moving to Middleweight – But on One Condition

  • Kamaru Usman considering move up to compete at middleweight.
  • Aiming for a quick fight turnaround following knockout win over Jorge Masvidal at UFC 261.
  • Would only be open to a move up if Israel Adesanya loses belt against Marvin Vettori.

UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman has revealed that he is open to the idea of moving up a weight class but would only do so if close friend Israel Adesanya were to lose his middleweight title.

The Nigerian-born all-rounder has enjoyed a monumental rise to the top of the UFC’s rankings.

Following a stunning 17 fight win streak, including a 14 fight unbeaten run in the UFC, Usman now sits proudly on top of the promotion’s pound-for-pound rankings.

The welterweight’s surge has recently been amplified by two stunning victories over arch-rival Jorge Masvidal.

Following the pair’s gruelling encounter during the summer of 2020, Usman, who came away with a decision win that night, agreed to fight ‘Gamebred’ once more at UFC 261.

In what was one of the cleanest and most devastating knockouts in the sport’s history, a stunning right cross from the champion sent his Miami-born rival into what can only be described as the fight game’s shadow realm.

Apr 24, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Kamaru Usman (Red Gloves) fights Jorge Masvidal (Blue Gloves) during UFC 261 at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports
Apr 24, 2021; Jacksonville, Florida, USA; Kamaru Usman (Red Gloves) fights Jorge Masvidal (Blue Gloves) during UFC 261 at VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Despite already cementing his place in the sport’s most illustrious conversations, Usman has revealed he has plans to write history and could attempt to become a two-division champion.

Will Make the Move to 185lb on One Condition

Seemingly keen to replicate the achievements of Conor McGregor, Daniel Cormier, Amanda Nunes, and Henry Cejudo, Usman has admitted he is open to competing for two belts.

With Adesanya set to defend his strap against rising contender Marvin Vettori at UFC 263 and Usman eyeing a quick fight turnaround, there is mounting speculation that the welterweight king’s next bout could be for his second title.

However, despite having one eye on the middleweight division, the ‘Nigerian Nightmare’ has revealed to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto that he would only make the jump if his good friend and current champ Adesanya is not “in the picture”.

With the whole Marvin and Israel situation, I don’t necessarily want to think about that. I’m 100 percent behind Izzy and I think he can pull it out. I love Marin as well but I think Izzy can that one out. He’s done it before and I think he can and I think he will.

But if there was a case to where I would actually go up and challenge for that belt it would be without Izzy being in the picture.

So if Izzy is not champ, then it’s something I could take a look at.

Kamaru Usman on the possibility of moving up to middleweight
Leah is a 28-year-old professional British sports journalist who specialises in reporting on top-flight European football and MMA. Leah works for a top-tier UK sports media company which is where she can be found providing exclusive content and interviews with some of sport's biggest names. In her spare time Leah enjoys playing poker and listening to American hip-hop!

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