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Will Kamaru Usman Win Back His Lost Title?
Kamaru Usman spectacularly lost his UFC title defense back in August, getting caught off-guard by British fighter Leon Edwards. Usman, who had successfully defended his title multiple times up until that point, wanted another shot at his title, though, and a rematch has been penciled in for later this year.
Do you think Usman has what it takes, the bookmaker MMA odds of him being able to do it are split, but we think he can do it? Edwards is a great fighter, but we’ve learned not to underrate Usman over the past few years.
Who Is Kamaru Uzman?
Kamaru Usman is a professional mixed martial artist from Nigeria who currently competes in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). Born on May 11, 1987, in Auchi, Nigeria, Usman began training in wrestling and eventually transitioned to mixed martial arts. He made his professional debut in 2012 and quickly made a name for himself, winning several regional titles before joining the UFC in 2015. Despite making his debut in his late 20s, Usman has seamlessly transitioned to professional UFC fighting.
In the UFC, Usman quickly established himself as one of the top contenders in the welterweight division, winning several high-profile fights and eventually earning a shot at the title in 2019. At UFC 235, Usman defeated Tyron Woodley to become the UFC Welterweight Champion, a title he has successfully defended multiple times. This represented a landmark moment for Usman; he’d been working up to this point for a while, but people were unsure whether he could get the win.
With his combination of dominant wrestling and striking skills, Usman has become one of the most dominant champions in the UFC, and he continues to be a top draw in the sport today. He is widely regarded as one of the best fighters in the world, and his legacy as one of the all-time African greats is only just beginning. While there are areas where he does fall short, his overall fighting ability, and his grappling talent, mean that there are few fighters who wouldn’t struggle when fighting him.
How Did Kamaru Uzman Lose His Title?
Kamaru Usman was on the brink of another successful title defense at UFC 278, but Leon Edwards had other ideas in mind. In the run-up to the fight, Usman had been near-perfect in the UFC, with a record of 20-1. He had also been the reigning welterweight champion for three years, with six consecutive title defenses under his belt. Up until this point, Usman was on top of the world, and despite not having a huge amount of fighters under his belt, he was incredibly successful in the octagon.
However, Edwards orchestrated an unforgettable comeback that resulted in Usman’s first defeat in the UFC. The British fighter feinted, causing Usman to slip and lower his guard, setting him up for a perfectly timed head kick. The shin connected cleanly, and Usman was knocked out cold as Edwards spectacularly claimed the title. In a cruel twist of fate, Usman had been fighting a near-perfect fight up until this point too, as confirmed by UFC boss Dana White post-clash.
Following his devastating loss, he released a statement acknowledging that even champions make mistakes. He promised to return stronger, writing on Twitter: “Champs f$ck up sometimes… but we bounce back and come with vengeance!!”
This defeat may have marked the end of his reign as champion, but it will not diminish his legacy as one of the most dominant fighters in UFC history. Now, attention turns back to him as many expect him to return for his lost title.
Can Kamaru Uzman Regain His Title?
If Kamaru Usman wants to compare his loss to Leon Edwards to a ‘Hail Mary in the Super Bowl,’ then Belal Muhammad will be making his own football analogies. Muhammad thinks that, like in football, there are no repeats, which is why it’s important to perform when it matters most. The UFC is reportedly set to schedule a rematch between Usman and Edwards in early 2023, giving ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ a chance to regain his title after being defeated by ‘Rocky’ at UFC 278 last August.
Speculation about the date of the fight has been circulating, with rumors of a May date, specifically the 23rd. However, this is not confirmed, and a lot can change between now and then, so it’s best not to get one’s hopes up too high. On the other hand, the Daily Mail has reported that the fight will be taking place in March adding to the confusion surrounding the exact date of the bout. One thing is certain, the fight will happen, but a concrete date has not yet been determined.