Kamaru Usman is open to putting up his UFC Welterweight title against top contenders including Khamzat Chimaev, but to get a shot at his 170-pound crown, fighters will need to cross one hurdle first, and that hurdle is Colby Covington.
Covington can beat everybody else, but he just can’t beat me: Kamaru Usman
“The Nigerian Nightmare”, who is currently away from the Octagon recovering from a hand injury, is expected to face Leon Edwards in his next bout. On the other hand, the Welterweight division has been seeing the rise of Khamzat Chimaev, currently ranked no 3 in the division and is touted as the next potential title contender.
However, Usman revealed during a recent interview with The Underground that in order to land a title fight, Chimaev needs to face Covington, Usman’s longtime rival in the UFC, and that rule applies for any other Welterweight contender aside from “The Wolf”.
“If I’m healthy and I get in there and am able to go in and go through a guy. Leon Edwards is a tough, tough guy, I know that, the world knows that. If I’m able to, God willing, I’m able to get through him very, very quickly I might decide, you know what give me someone next week. So, you never know. It’s relatively close, there are a lot of guys in the top division, you got Belal Muhammad is there, you’ve got Chimaev is there, and you’ve got Covington is still there holding that door strong,” said Usman.
“At this point, you know, Covington is standing right in front of that door. For it to really make sense, for anyone to be able to get through they need to be able to go through him. He’s proven that he can beat everybody else, but he just can’t beat me. For you to prove that you can fight for the title I think you need to go through that guy. At the end of the day, I’m going to keep running through these guys until I’m bored. Whoever’s next is next,” Usman added. [H/T BJPenn.com]
Usman and Covington have locked horns twice in the past. Their first encounter took place at UFC 245 in November 2019, which ended in a 5th round TKO victory for Usman. The rematch headlined UFC 268 last November and this time, Usman came out victorious via unanimous decision.
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