Kamaru Usman's manager provides disappointing update on his return

MMA manager Ali Abdelaziz has confirmed that there is currently no timeframe in place for Kamaru Usman’s return to the UFC.

For months now fans have been waiting for more information regarding the return of UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman. It’s not an exaggeration to suggest he’s the pound-for-pound best fighter in the promotion right now and after successfully defending his strap five times, you could easily make the argument that he’s closing in on Georges St-Pierre when it comes to the 170-pound GOAT discussion.

Still, he’s got work left to do, with his next challenger expected to be Birmingham’s own Leon Edwards.

‘Rocky’ has battled incredibly hard to get to this position and the UFC looks set to reward him with a long-awaited title shot. However, as a result of a hand injury sustained by Usman, there’s been no official announcement about the fight and when it may take place.

Now, as per Ali Abdelaziz, it’s been all but confirmed that July isn’t going to be feasible.

“Spoke to Ali Abdelaziz ( @AliAbdelaziz00 ) about Kamaru Usman’s hand. He said as of now Kamaru has not been medically cleared and there is no timeframe on his return. Kamaru only started slowly testing the hand this month.”

Keeping the momentum going

At the age of 35, ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ will want to do everything in his power to maximise the time he has left at the top of the mixed martial arts mountain.

He’s teased a boxing superfight against Canelo Alvarez but if he really wants to go down in the history books, defending his turf at welterweight is going to be the best route forward.

The likes of Tyron Woodley, Colby Covington, Gilbert Burns and Jorge Masvidal have all fallen at his feet with a new wave of stars just waiting to break into the upper echelons of the division.

Edwards won’t want to push his shot back any further than he needs to but according to Ariel Helwani, the UFC is now looking at UFC 278 on August 20 as a target date – but only if Usman is 100% ready to go, which isn’t yet clear.

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Jens Pulver

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