MIAMI – Kamaru Usman thinks there’s a possibility he crosses paths with boxing superstar Canelo Alvarez in the near future.
The UFC welterweight champion believes a crossover boxing bout against Canelo is a must happen in combat sports and thinks it’s not as hard to make, as people make it out to be.
Currently, Usman (20-1 MMA, 15-0 UFC) is considered by most the best fighter at 170 pounds, being UFC welterweight champion and having held that coveted spot for three years. Meanwhile, Canelo is the undisputed boxing champion at super middleweight – 168 pounds.
Usman is confident a boxing match against Canelo is a possibility and doesn’t shy away from the challenge despite him not being a boxer.
“Absolutely, why wouldn’t it be a possibility?” Usman told MMA Junkie. “He said it himself. Pound-for-pound vs. pound-for-pound. And what Ali (Abdelaziz) meant in that (calling Canelo a ‘coward’) is, they expect us to go over there. We’re real fighters. What would happen if me and him was out in the street? We’re real fighters and they expect us to come in and participate in their sport, their art. That’s why Ali said that. But at the end of the day, I’m willing to step in there. I’ve got the ‘cojones’ to step in there.
“So it is what it is, but I do think that fight 100 percent needs to happen. The pound-for-pound vs. the pound-for-pound. Everyone says it can’t be done until they see it done. I’ve said it before, I will stop him.”
There have been very few circumstances where high-caliber boxers and top-notch UFC fighters have met in the past. Former boxing champion James Tony fought former UFC champion Randy Couture in the UFC back in 2010. And most notably former two-division UFC champion Conor McGregor stepped in the ring to take on boxing great Floyd Mayweather in 2017.
It’s a rare sighting to see a UFC champion in the boxing ring, but Usman doesn’t think it’s a tough make.
“Me and Dana haven’t talked about it, but it’s a fight that I want if Canelo wants to fight, and he said that’s he’s not opposed to the fight, then we’ll make the fight happen,” Usman said. “It’s not too difficult. Dana White is the best promoter of the game for a reason. It’s not too difficult to make. I think we can make that fight.”
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Critics have blamed the Mayweather-McGregor boxing super fight for taking time away from McGregor’s prime, log jamming the UFC lightweight division – as contenders waited for their shot at the title – and many other things.
Usman says a fight with Canelo would be vastly different than the experience fans got watching Mayweather vs. McGregor. Usman, who’s been one of the busiest champions for the UFC in recent years, believes it would be a much more fun and competitive fight.
“That’s the thing – we’re coming to entertain,” Usman explained. “The Mayweather-McGregor, they entertained people with the way they talked and the way they walk. And we know Conor the way he entertains and so does Floyd. I get that. But Floyd is the absolute best defensive boxer we’ve ever seen, even though he took a very different approach in that fight. That was still that type of fight.
“I’m a fighter, I’m going to come to fight. I’m always marching forward to fight and so is Canelo Alvarez. He marches forward to fight. He’s not just going to sit there and try to dodge punches all the time. He does doge punches, but he’s not trying to do only that and make it a defensive fight. I’m coming to fight and he’s coming to fight. And it’s not just that, we’re both the pound-for-pound best at the top of the sport right now. That’s never been done. It would. be the greatest event in history, and of course, with Dana White behind me.”
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