Photo by Louis Grasse/PxImages/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Kamaru Usman has begun running laps around all the contenders the UFC welterweight division has to offer. The reigning champion currently is expecting to have yet another rematch as his next title defense when taking on Leon Edwards, but that fantastic encounter with Saul “Canelo” Alvarez is still ever-present in mind.

Around the time of Usman’s last fight with Colby Covington in Nov. 2021, he expressed interest in taking his talents to the boxing ring specifically for a match with Canelo — the man largely considered the best boxer in the world. As a fighter many see as MMA’s current best, Usman still wants to make it happen and has taken aim for the possibility by year’s end.

“In 2022, I’m gonna shock the world,” Usman told TMZ Sports. “July, International Fight Week, I’m gonna fight Leon Edwards. God willing I get through Leon Edwards, September, Mexican Independence Day, I will stop Canelo Alvarez.

“Absolutely I see myself winning that fight. And that’s the thing that a lot of people fail to realize. A lot of people, because they think they can’t do something, they try to put that upon you. ‘Oh, you can’t do that. It can’t be done.’ Everything can’t be done until it’s done. So a lot of people are gonna say, ‘You can’t do it. No, he’s too good, he’s too skilled, too strong.’ Yeah, they said that about Tyron Woodley. He’s too big, he’s got knockout power, he’s fast, he’s explosive. What happened? I told him I was gonna dominate him for five rounds and I did that. I’m not gonna step in there if I don’t think I can get it done.”

Canelo appeared on The MMA Hour this week with Ariel Helwani and was more open to the idea of a match with Usman than he was prior. “Maybe. Why not? You never say no,” he said.

From Usman’s perspective, he doesn’t see much for Canelo to continue doing in the boxing world, especially from a financial side. And when you look at the last time we saw a fight of this hypothetical magnitude, Conor McGregor and Floyd Mayweather did pretty well for themselves in that department.

“Boxing is dead at the end of the day and I’m not saying there’s not good boxers, there’s some fantastic boxers,” Usman said. “Errol Spence Jr., I mean there’s a ton of guys that I could go down and really tell you that are fantastic fighters. But boxing is dying. At the end of the day, everybody wants to be entertained. And when have you ever seen the pound-for-pound against the pound-for-pound?

“He’s walking around saying payday, payday… absolutely. It’s the biggest payday you are ever gonna make. I understand that he gets paid, he makes money. But fighting me is the biggest payday he’s ever gonna make. We talking nine figures, for sure.”

TOP STORIES

Recipe. Dan Lambert says he added ‘ingredient’ to Colby Covington’s character.

Rankings. Check out the latest update to MMA Fighting’s Pound-for-Pound rankings.

Trolls. Kevin Holland reveals that he’s gotten trolled more since inviting trolls to gym.

Boxing. Canelo Alvarez doesn’t rule out the possibility of a Kamaru Usman crossover match.

VIDEO STEW

Between the Links.

UFC 272 pre-fight press conference.

UFC 272 pre-fight press conference reaction.

Embedded 4.

The must-see matchup.

SOCIAL MEDIA BOUILLABAISSE

That could be it for Michelle Waterson.

Khamzat + Dana.

pic.twitter.com/cNeObm4TxI

— Khamzat Chimaev (@KChimaev) March 4, 2022

Versace Conor.

pic.twitter.com/JJO2P9wJin

— Conor McGregor (@TheNotoriousMMA) March 3, 2022

Cain has JDS’ support.

Que a justiça seja feita e Cain possa estar onde é seu lugar, juntos de sua família e o mais rápido possível #ForcaCain #FreeCain

— Junior Dos Santos ️➕ (@junior_cigano) March 3, 2022

Another flying knee?

.@GamebredFighter sees a knee in Colby’s future #UFC272

@bokamotoESPN pic.twitter.com/qJJivL7lUa

— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) March 4, 2022

New deal for “Gamebred.”

Thank you Hunter Cambell and @danawhite and my team @malkikawa @Abraham_kawa and @FirstRoundMgmt for making sure my kids will never go hungry again #blessed pic.twitter.com/C2yk5l5pru

— Jorge Masvidal UFC (@GamebredFighter) March 3, 2022

Chael has no answers.

Khamzat Chimaev visa problems… pic.twitter.com/CRGDYLwBID

— Chael Sonnen (@ChaelSonnen) March 3, 2022

That one O’Malley post-fight interview.

#OnThisDay four years ago, @SugaSeanMMA puts on a Fight of the Night performance at UFC 222 to remain

[ Watch the full fight now on @UFCFightPass ] pic.twitter.com/g0UR7zvpZU

— UFC on This Day (@UFConThisDay) March 3, 2022

BMF Masvidal finishes.

FIGHT ANNOUNCEMENTS

Gilbert Burns (20-4) vs. Khamzat Chimaev (10-0); UFC 273, April 9

Krzysztof Jotko (23-5) vs. Gerald Meerschaert (34-14); UFC Vegas 53, April 30

FINAL THOUGHTS

I’ve never liked or been interested in any sort of boxing-MMA crossover type of fights because we typically always know how they’ll go. But honestly, Kamaru kind of swayed me with just that simple and confident line of, “Everything can’t be done until it’s done.” He’s got a point. So why the hell not? Only one way to find out, right? Thanks for reading!

EXIT POLL

If you find something you’d like to see in the Morning Report, hit up @DrakeRiggs_ on Twitter and let him know about it. Also follow MMAFighting on Instagram and like us on Facebook.

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