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UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman shares story behind popular nickname 

Kamaru Usman shares how he came to be known as
Kamaru Usman shares how he came to be known as 'Marty'
Modified 29 Dec 2020, 13:23 IST

Reigning UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman shared the interesting story of how he earned the nickname 'Marty'

The trailer for an upcoming episode of 'Anatomy of A Fighter' shows Usman saying that his teachers would often 'butcher' his name 'Kamarudeen':

"My name was always something that teachers butchered. I'll be in class and teachers are like 'Uhh, Ka-Ma-Ru-Deen', and I just got tired and tired, and tired of people butchering that name."

According to Usman, his head wrestling coach struggled to say his name, and was the one who gave him the nickname 'Marty':

"I ran into our head wrestling coach for the first time, and he comes over, he looks at the roll call, he's calling roll and he looks at my name and he's like...'I'm not going to say that. I'm going to call you Marty.'"

Kamaru Usman is of Nigerian descent, and his name 'Kamarudeen' is of Muslim origin. In Arabic, the name is spelled as 'Qamar ud-Din' and means 'Moon of the Religion'.

In recent years, other MMA fighters - most notably Ben Askren, Jorge Masvidal, Tyron Woodley, and Colby Covington - have used 'Marty' to talk trash to Kamaru Usman.


Kamaru Usman's rise from The Ultimate Fighter winner to UFC champion

Reigning UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman is just one of the many winners of The Ultimate Fighter to go on and become UFC champion.

There have been a total of nine former TUF winners to go on and eventually capture world championship gold in the biggest MMA promotion in the world:

Forrest Griffin (TUF Season 1 - UFC light heavyweight champion)

Rashad Evans (TUF Season 2 - UFC light heavyweight champion)

Michael Bisping (TUF Season 3 - UFC middleweight champion)

Matt Serra (TUF Season 4 - UFC welterweight champion)

Tony Ferguson (TUF Season 13 - interim UFC lightweight champion)

TJ Dillashaw (TUF Season 14 - UFC bantamweight champion)

Robert Whittaker (TUF: The Smashes - UFC middleweight champion)

Rose Namajunas (TUF Season 20 - UFC women's strawweight champion)

Kamaru Usman won the 21st season of The Ultimate Fighter back in 2015 and then went on to win eight straight fights in the UFC. In 2019, Usman dominated Tyron Woodley to become the UFC's new 170-pound titleholder.

Since then, Usman has successfully defended the title twice, defeating Colby Covington by TKO and Jorge Masvidal by unanimous decision.

In 2021, Usman is expected to defend the title against teammate Gilbert Burns.

Published 29 Dec 2020, 13:23 IST
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