Kamaru Usman is likely the greatest mixed martial artist on the planet. The UFC welterweight champion is currently the No.1-ranked pound-for-pound fighter in the promotion and will look to defend his belt for the sixth time against No.2-ranked welterweight Leon Edwards at UFC 278.
The two fighters previously faced off nearly seven years ago, where Usman won by unanimous decision. Both have evolved tremendously since that fight. Edwards hasn't lost, while Usman has established himself as the pound-for-pound king and one of the greatest fighters of all-time.
While speaking with Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour, Edwards stated that he believes the success has changed Usman. When asked about Usman appearing shirtless at events, Edwards made a comparison to a famous actor, stating (starting at the 3:41:40 mark):
"You know Terry Crews, from White Chicks? He looks like that guy from White Chicks... I don't know what's going on. The money's getting to his head."
Edwards has credited his rough upbringing with keeping him modest. It is no surprise that he believes that his opponent has lost his humility, although in a division where trash-talking is so common, Usman has adapted.
Can Leon Edwards dethrone Kamaru Usman?
The task ahead of Leon Edwards at UFC 278 seems daunting. Kamaru Usman has only lost one fight in his career, all the way back in his second professional fight nearly a decade ago, and is 15-0 since joining the UFC. If he defeats Edwards, it will be a historic win, as he will tie Anderson Silva for the longest win-streak in UFC history.
Kamaru Usman is hyperfocused and is slowly challenging for a place on MMA' Mt. Rushmore. He has become obsessed with being the best version of himself and somehow seems to improve in every fight. While Edwards may believe that the money is getting to his head, Usman remains as dominant as ever.
As great as Leon Edwards has been since his last fight with Usman, it is hard to envision him breaking ground and doing what no other fighter in the UFC has done before him. Usman has reached a level that few fighters have ever reached before, and he will be favored to cruise to victory no matter who he is facing.
Fans can also check out the video below on various martial arts styles: