Showtime president Stephen Espinoza slammed Kamaru Usman for accusing Canelo Alvarez of ducking him. According to Espinoza, UFC fighters are not yet familiar with the fact that boxers can choose their own opponents.
Espinoza believes it is not merely a question of ducking someone for boxers but having the liberty to pick their fights. The Showtime president seemingly took a dig at Dana White, saying UFC fighters let a "kickboxing instructor" choose their fights. White used to ply his trade as a boxercise instructor ahead of his UFC days. Responding to Usman, Espinoza wrote on Twitter:
"LOL. UFC fighters want that boxing paycheck but don't understand that boxers have the autonomy to choose opponents. It's not about not wanting "smoke." It's about professional self-determination, a foreign concept to those who let the kickboxing instructor choose their fights."
Check out the tweet below:
Espinoza's comments came in response to a tweet from 'The Nigerian Nightmare' where he said Canelo Alvarez didn't want the "smoke". Prior to that, Alvarez seemingly turned down the crossover superfight, claiming it wasn't Usman's turn yet.
Check out the tweet below:
Joe Rogan wants to see Kamaru Usman vs. Canelo Alvarez
Currently recovering from hand surgery, Kamaru Usman has long been rallying for a crossover bout against boxing Super Middleweight Champion Canelo Alvarez. While the event promises a lucrative payday, UFC president Dana White is not too keen on the idea of a crossover fight.
White is skeptical of Kamaru Usman's chances against Alvarez in a boxing match and doesn't see the fight selling as well as Conor McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather. However, many others from the combat sports community want to see two of the greatest fighters on the planet trade fists.
UFC color commentator and podcaster Joe Rogan believes fighting Canelo will be an invaluable experience for Usman even if he loses. Wishing him a big payday, Rogan said on the Hotboxin' podcast with Mike Tyson:
"I would like to see him fight Canelo, I really would. Not because I think that he’s a favorite in a boxing match against one of the greatest boxers of all-time, but I want to see him get a giant payday. The same way I would like to see [Francis] Ngannou fight Tyson Fury. That’s a way you can make a s—t-load of money, and I don’t think it damages his potential as a UFC fighter. I think it would be invaluable experience for him, as a champion, if he did have that fight and then came back over to MMA. I think he’d probably be even better as a striker if he gets through it relatively undamaged, even if he loses.”
Watch Rogan's appearance on Tyson's podcast below: