With Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) scrambling to put together big fights in an attempt to make up for lost time because of the COVID-19 pandemic, several surprising matches ups are popping up seemingly out of nowhere.
Sort of like this one.
One of the most unexpected proposed bouts is one pitting Welterweight champion, Kamaru Usman, against former champ-champ, Conor McGregor. Indeed, Usman’s manager recently went on record to say if Jorge Masvidal prefers a rematch against Nate Diaz instead of facing “The Nigerian Nightmare,” then UFC should give the title fight to “Notorious.”
According to Usman, he is more than down with that plan, but finds it odd that the usually loquacious McGregor is rather silent after being gifted a shot at the 170-pound title and a chance to make even more history.
“This will be history. I know a lot of people are trying to shit on it by saying Conor doesn’t deserve it,” Usman told ESPN. “Okay, but the next guy deserving of the fight would be Leon Edwards if he can get in the country. If Conor can make this fight happen, why wouldn’t we fight him? He just fought at 170 and he looked great. ‘Cowboy’ Cerrone beat a lot of guys that were ranked at 170 and Conor went out there and starched him.
“So how could people sit here and say Conor is not deserving?” he continued. “We are about making history here. He is saying that he is the pound-for-pound greatest of all time across three weight classes. This is your chance to go out there and win your third belt in a third division. I am going to give him the opportunity. If Conor wants it, let’s do it.”
So after perhaps upsetting a lot of other worthy contenders at 170 pounds with his offer to McGregor, Usman is shocked that McGregor is nowhere to be seen.
“But Conor is quiet now, why is he quiet? Who says no to a title shot? I have never seen this in history,” he said. “Who says no when the champion says come and get your title shot? Unless you know you have no chance in hell of winning and this might change the landscape of your fighting career forever. That’s the only way I can see people saying, ‘You know what, I am going to pass on that title shot.’”
Perhaps he doesn’t want to get shagged.
To be fair, McGregor hasn’t exactly turned down the fight yet, but his silence speaks volumes according to “The Nigerian Nightmare.” McGregor made a successful return to action earlier this year, knocking out Donald Cerrone in less than one minute at UFC 246 in a Welterweight bout (see it here).
And though “Notorious” was hoping to land a championship rematch against Khabib Nurmagomedov, he will have to wait a bit longer as Justin Gaethje is the next man up at Lightweight.
And since both manager and fighter are willing to give McGregor a shot at winning his third title in as many divisions, the promotion would obviously be quick to put it together if “Notorious” gives the order.
Unless Dana White thinks Usman is too big for his biggest star.