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"I'd rather have two Africans with belts than one with two" - Why Kamaru Usman will never fight Israel Adesanya

Israel Adesanya and Kamaru Usman
Israel Adesanya and Kamaru Usman
Soumik Datta
Modified 25 Feb 2021

Kamaru Usman has stated that he is not interested in moving up to the UFC's middleweight division.

Usman, however, added that if Israel Adesanya is willing to give up his title and quest in 185, he might consider moving up a weight class.

The reigning UFC welterweight champion has been on a dominant run in the welterweight division.

With wins over Tyron Woodley, Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal and Gilbert Burns, there isn't much left for Kamaru Usman to achieve in 170.

In an interview with ESPN's Brett Okamoto, Kamaru Usman made it known that he would consider moving up a weight class if his fellow Nigerian, Israel Adesanya, gives up on the middleweight division.

The current UFC welterweight champion would entertain the thought of moving up, but has no interest in fighting Izzy โ€“ something that he has stated over and over again.

"Absolutely, absolutely. If Izzy is willing to move up, well he is moving up. But if he's willing to give up that 85 pounds and says 'I have nothing to do in that division anymore then absolutely. I would entertain that thought but by no account right now might would I ever entertain the 'Oh, I'm going up to fight with Izzy'. That's not something I am interested in."

Kamaru Usman added that he would rather have two African UFC champions, as opposed to one African holding two belts at the same time.

"I've stated over and over and over before, I'd rather have two Africans with belts as opposed to one African with two belts."

What's next for Kamaru Usman in the UFC?

Kamaru Usman is currently on the back of a huge win over Gilbert Burns from UFC 258.

Having finished his former teammate via TKO, the reigning UFC welterweight champion went on to call out Jorge Masvidal for a rematch.

Judging by the direction things are headed towards, Usman and Masvidal could be nominated as coaches for the return of The Ultimate Fighter this year.

The two top welterweight fighters could engage in a rematch from UFC 251 by the end of 2021.

Published 18 Feb 2021, 13:28 IST
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