Kamaru Usman ties the record for over 97 percent control time on the ground along with Khabib Nurmagomedov and he is proud to share it. The UFC welterweight champion recently posted the RT Sport statistic on his Twitter account and tagged the Eagle to share the honor.
'Elite Company with my brother @TeamKhabib @AliAbdelaziz00,' Kamaru Usman tweeted.
Ahead of Kamaru Usman's scheduled title defense against Gilbert Burns at UFC 258, the Russian outlet RT Sport published a statistic that revealed Kamaru Usman and lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov are the only fighters in UFC history who have spent over one hour of cage time on the ground and held dominant position for over 97 percent of that time. While Khabib tops the control time at a staggering 97.40 percent, Usman is a close second with 97.36 percent.
The statistics are mind-blowing but not at all surprising given Usman and Khabib's grappling prowess. Both fighters are among of the most dominant wrestlers in the history of the sport and employ an aggressive wrestling attack that is virtually impossible to prepare for. Kamaru Usman is a freestyle wrestler and former NCAA Division 2 champion, while Khabib Nurmagomedov is a former Combat Sambo world champion who also trained in wrestling and Judo.
Kamaru Usman and Khabib Nurmagomedov's control time is a number and numbers can be misleading sometimes, but not in this case. The grappler duo have bested some of the best MMA grapplers, like Rafael Dos Anjos, Tyron Woodley, Justin Gaethje and Gleison Tibau to name a few.
The pair also hold the record for second longest winning streak in the UFC at 13, tied with Georges St-Pierre, Jon Jones, Demetrious Johnson and Max Holloway. Khabib's retirement will not allow him to extend the streak further but Kamaru Usman is an active champion, four wins away from breaking Anderson Silva's record for most consecutive wins (16) in the history of the organization.
Khabib Nurmagomedov believes nobody will be able to beat Kamaru Usman for the next two years
In a February 2021 interview with RT Sport, Khabib Nurmagomedov predicted that Kamaru Usman will remain undefeated for at least two years from now unless new fighters break into the scene to challenge him.
"He's a champion, a very physical guy. I don't think anyone will be able to beat him in the next two years... I think he needs some fresh blood with a good perspective," Khabib Nurmagomedov said.
Kamaru Usman has come a long way from his predominantly wrestling origins. The Nigerian nightmare has shown significant improvements in his striking game in recent fights against Colby Covington and Gilbert Burns. Given that Usman has defeated six out of the top eight fighters in the UFC's welterweight division, it is highly unlikely that a new champion will be crowned unless a fresh face with answers to Usman's dominant overall game emerges on the scene.