Usman was on the verge of tying the record for the most consecutive wins in UFC with legendary mixed martial artist Anderson Silva before he got dethroned in a massive upset last month. The dominant former pound-for-pound champion put in another dominant showing against Leon Edwards at UFC 278 until he succumbed to a vicious head kick in the final minute of the bout, marking his first loss in the promotion.
In an appearance on the popular podcast show “Joe Rogan Experience,” Usman talked about his ambitions to compete against Prochazka and former 205-pound titleholder Jan Blachowicz. He also wanted to take on the fast-rising prospect Khamzat Chimaev in a return bout at welterweight.
“This was my roadmap,” Usman said. “Beat Leon in the way that I wanted to and go to 205, beat Jiri Prochazka, defend with Jan, come back down, defend with Khamzat. And then, if Conor wanted to, or if Canelo at that point wanted to, do one and just sail off.”
“Yeah, Israel’s at 85, I don’t take any pleasure in fighting Israel Adesanya. If Israel retired, 100 percent. (205-pounds) is a big jump but I have the style and I have the mental ability to be able to handle those guys. Well, I don’t want to say those guys. Not everybody there. (just a) couple of those guys, and they happen to be at the top.
“So, I think I could deal with Jiri and Jan. Not saying they’re not great, they’re scary, they’re f**king big scary guys, which is kind of what makes it also tempting for me. It’s cause they are scary.“
He suggested a similar route could lay ahead after a rubber match with Edwards.
“I have a new roadmap,” Usman added. “Just a pit stop, I gotta run it back with Leon.”
Usman Shared What He Was Thinking Before the KO
“The Nigerian Nightmare” was getting the better of Edwards and appeared set to add another title defense to his glittering resume. However, a slick striking setup from Edwards handed Usman the first knockout loss of his career.
He reflected on the moment right before he got blasted by Edwards’ kick to the head.
“No, that’s not who I am,” Usman said via MMA Fighting. “When I fight, I got petal to the metal and I don’t look at the clock. “I’m a goer, when I hear the [horn] I still want to go, and when the ref says, ‘Break, go to your corners,’ I still want to go. That’s the way that I fight. I wanted the finish, it was just a beautiful technique.
“I could’ve taken him down, but I really wanted a finish and when I was setting up, and only God knows what I was setting up, I didn’t land it, [who knows] how much damage it could’ve done, but it was just a beautiful technique.”
Usman Is Willing To Fight Conor McGregor
Former UFC two-division champion Conor McGregor called for a matchup with Usman earlier this year. While he finds it hard to believe the showdown would get booked, Usman previously expressed his willingness to welcome the Irish icon back to competition.
“He could call me out, but that don’t mean he’s going to fight me,” Usman said (ht MMA Junkie). “It’s not necessarily that they protect him, because he’s bigger to where he can pick, where he can call his shots. He’s that big. Conor can say, ‘I’m going to fight you tomorrow,’ and he’s still gonna sell 1 million buys… absolutely, I’d grab that check.”