UFC 278: Kamaru Usman refuses to rule out fighting Jon Jones at light heavyweight

  • Tom Ward
Kamaru Usman & Jon Jones

UFC superstar Kamaru Usman has refused to rule out fighting Jon Jones – despite the fact they are in two completely different weight classes.

The ‘Nigerian Nightmare’, 35, is currently gearing up for a return to the UFC Octagon, which he’ll be welcomed back to this weekend by Leon Edwards.

And it seems the UFC welterweight champion is still intent on exploring a move to light heavyweight after his return to the eight-sided cage.

Usman was initially a bit hesitant at first about the prospect of fighting Jones by urging people to ‘chill’.

ALL THE INFO: UFC 278: Date, Announced Fight Card, Location, Kamaru Usman and more

But the pound-for-pound king quickly performed a U-turn by leaving the door open to facing Jonny Bones.

When asked what he thinks of a potential fight with Jones, the 35-year-old said: “We’ve got to chill with these scenarios now.”

The Ultimate Fighter 21 winner then added: “Nah, Jon is Jon, he’s big as hell, which is why he can easily make that transition to heavyweight.

Kamaru Usman
Kamaru Usman at the UFC 278 press conference

“If the money’s right, I’ll try my luck, but Jon is great.

“Jon is a fantastic competitor and definitely in that conversation as the best-ever.”

When asked if he thinks a fight with Khamzat Chimaev would be a ‘super gigantic fight’, Usman replied: “I think any fight that I fight next is going to be a gigantic fight.”

He added: “I’ve already stated that I want that light heavyweight belt. For a lot of people it’s crazy but a lot of things seem crazy until it’s done. I stated that I wanted it.

“After this win, [UFC President] Dana [White] and I will sit down and we’ll have a conversation.

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In what year did he make his UFC debut?

“You guys think that I kid when I come up here? I usually laugh when I’m kidding, but I’m not kidding. Everyone thought I was playing with the whole ‘Canelo’ situation. I wasn’t.

“I really wanted that. It’s something that I wanted. It didn’t come to fruition then, who knows what the future holds but that light heavyweight belt, I’m not saying I would run through the division, don’t get me wrong, but at the top, I think I can get it done.”

READ MORE: Leon Edwards: ‘I want no excuses’ after I beat Kamaru Usman at UFC 278

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As for those who are concerned that he might be too small for the weight class, Usman had this to say in response.

He continued: “I don’t need to put on no weight.

“People don’t understand what my death grip is like. I can get around you. I don’t care whether you’re heavyweight or 205, these understand what my strength is. I have an idea what I want to do in a fight, but I leave that up to my coaches.

“I have an approach of how I want to fight those fights in my head, which usually comes out when everything else is failing in the fight, I just f***ing go. However I want to fight, I’m going to fight it. I’m going to try the coaches’ way, this is what y’all [sic] dialled up, I’m going to do it but if everything is failing, f*** it, let’s just go.”

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