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Kamaru Usman says crossover mega-fight with Canelo "only makes sense" and would be combat sports' 'biggest event ever'

Kamaru Usman says crossover mega-fight with Canelo "only makes sense" and would be combat sports' 'biggest event ever'DAZN
Exclusive interview: With both world champions in their prime, Usman speaks to DAZN about the urgency to make the bout happen.

Around the same time that Kamaru Usman headlines UFC 268 against Colby Covington in New York City on Saturday night, Canelo Alvarez will be clashing with Caleb Plant at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

While the champions sharing a crowded combat sports night is great in his opinion, Usman, the UFC welterweight titleholder, is hoping to share the same ring with the unified super-middleweight boxing champion and sensation someday soon.

Straight up — Usman believes a fight with Canelo has got to happen.

“It only makes sense because we’re in an era to where people want to be entertained,” Usman told DAZN over the phone Tuesday evening about a potential mega bout with the Mexican superstar. “So, in order to entertain people, when have we in history ever seen the two pound-for-pound fighters in the world in combat sports at the top of their prime, when have we ever seen them compete? It never happened.”

With Usman, 34, and Canelo being 31-years-old, “The Nigerian Nightmare” thinks the timing is right for both fighting champions to scrap and make history under what could be one of the grandest marquees that combat sports has ever seen. Usman just thinks there needs to be urgency to make the dream bout happen in order for it to not repeat history when it comes to these kinds of mega clashes.

“Either man waits for the other one to get old,” Usman continued about the norm when it comes to crossover fights of this caliber. “It’s rarely ever really happened. But it’s either that both are out of their prime, both are old … it’s never been done.”

There’s no doubting either man’s dominance in his respective sport. In mixed martial arts, Usman (19-1) is seemingly growing more dominant with age. The welterweight champion has won 18 consecutive fights, punctuating three of his last four bouts with knockouts. He has defended his title four times since first being crowned welterweight king back in March 2019, having made the likes of Covington, Gilbert Burns and Jorge Masvidal (twice) all feel his wrath. The latter KO of Masvidal back in April put the combat sports world on extra notice of Usman's punching power.

Over in the sweet science, Canelo (56-1-2) stands as a four-division world champ — with Plant’s IBF title keeping him from becoming the first super middleweight champion in boxing history. He, too, is growing more dominant and showing more tools with each fight.

With boxing’s super middleweight being contested at 168 pounds and Usman tipping the scales at 169.5 pounds for his last fight, weight wouldn’t be an issue for a potential Usman-Canelo pairing.

So much so that the thought of facing Covington in a rematch this weekend isn’t keeping Usman from projecting the sheer magnitude of how it would be boxing with Canelo.

“In order for us to do that, this will be the greatest, the biggest event ever,” Usman said. “The two pound-for-pound fighters in combat sports at the top of their prime to get in there and duke it out, I believe will be probably the biggest event ever.”

He just might be right.

The DAZN News website will bring you all the live updates and results from UFC 268: Usman vs. Covington from Madison Square Garden in New York City on Saturday night.

The Canelo vs. Plant fight will not air on DAZN. However, The DAZN Boxing Show will be in Las Vegas during fight week for live episodes, exclusive interviews and more.

Also, the DAZN News website will bring you all the live text updates and results from Canelo-Plant at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Saturday night.