Kamaru Usman has been brimming with confidence while heading into his maiden title shot against Tyron Woodley this Saturday. However the 170 pound titlist thinks that his opponent is only trying to convince himself.
“He says a lot of stuff and sometimes when people talk too much, they’re trying to reassure themselves,” Woodley said at a media event on Monday (transcription via MMAFighting.com). “You haven’t heard me talk about Usman.”
Woodley has faced a mix of fighters coming from different stylistic backgrounds. From defeating a striker in Robbie Lawler to defending his belt against karate ace Stephen Thompson, Woodley has faced them all. However, he feels that Usman doesn’t bring anything significant to the table.
“I just wanted Usman to tell me how he’s going to beat me,” Woodley said. “‘Cause like I said before, Dong Hyun Kim is a judo master who wasn’t a striker. You look at guys like Thompson. Thompson was knocking out … Robert Whittaker fell victim to him, a lot of guys did. And [Usman] doesn’t bring that speciality in any category. Yes he was a Division II NCAA champ,” Woodley added. “I’m not taking that away from him, but please do not act like that is [a] Division I NCAA champ. It’s a different concept, it’s a different mentality, and it’s a different thing. So when I am competing with guys like [Josh] Koscheck who is a two-time NCAA Division I champion that scored zero takedowns, that had better striking, I just wanted him to really tell me how he’s going to win the fight.”
Woodley reiterated that his opponent has no trick up his sleeve to pull of an upset. He has also said that he is focussed on nothing else but his own game plan.
“I looked at his feed, ‘18 days, 17 days,’ like, I’m working,” Woodley said. “I’m planning my [rap album] release party, I’m training, I’m getting my game plan down. I don’t have to talk a lot because I’ve done it already. I’ve done it, I’m not going to stop doing it, and he just has not shown me that he provides the recipe or the cure to beating me that everyone else supposedly has.”