UFC 251 is scheduled to characteristic an assortment of wonderful spectacles on July 11 in Abu Dhabi. Along with the sheer awe that needs to be reserved for UFC officers having the ability to pull off such wildly entertaining combat playing cards in the course of the worldwide pandemic, UFC 251 has the added gravitas of that includes three UFC title fights, being the primary card scheduled for Struggle Island, and presenting from prime to backside what can be thought of one of many greatest combat playing cards in latest historical past per nearly any affordable metric.
However don’t lose sight in all that of arguably essentially the most exceptional focal point at UFC 251. UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman is among the scariest and most wonderful champions on this planet at this time.
And “The Nigerian Nightmare” deserves your full consideration.
Who wins? 🤔 pic.twitter.com/DudvAJbVgl
— Kelsey McCarson (@kelsey_mccarson) July 6, 2020
UFC 251 takes place July 11 at 10 p.m. Jap time on Struggle Island in Abu Dhabi. It should air as a pay-per-view on ESPN+.
Usman Ought to Be Praised for Taking Struggle on Brief Discover
Usman is ready to tackle short-notice opponent Jorge Masvidal in the primary occasion of UFC 251 on July 11 in Abu Dhabi.
It’s one of the vital extremely anticipated fights of the yr, and Usman accepted it on simply six days’ discover after his unique opponent Gilbert Burns was yanked off the cardboard as a consequence of sickness.
The audacity of Usman accepting the brand new combat is telling. Whereas each fighters needs to be counseled for taking such an enormous combat on quick discover, Usman would have been effectively inside his rights because the champ to move on Masvidal for UFC 251.
— UFC (@ufc) July 6, 2020
Whereas it’s true Usman was the one of many two fighters who was coaching for a combat on July 11 the entire time, it’s additionally true that the 33-year-old Nigerian-born American stands essentially the most to lose at UFC 251.
So Usman needs to be counseled for being the kind of champion that your entire sport can level to and laud as one thing particular.
However Usman’s willingness to just accept all comers isn’t the one factor that helps the 170-pound menace stand out amongst his friends.
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Usman’s Most Excellent Asset Is Wrestling
There’s merely no higher instance of simply how glorious a wrestler Usman have to be than to say that former NCAA Division I All-American wrestler Colby Covington tried precisely zero takedowns when the 2 males confronted one another final yr at UFC 245.
Whereas Covington, a former UFC interim champ, loves to face and strike and has the form of cardio benefit meaning he can accomplish that in excessive quantity, Covington has by no means been shy about taking his opponents right down to the mat on combat evening.
However he by no means took Usman to the bottom of their combat. In truth, Usman’s wonderful document of by no means being taken right down to the mat in a UFC combat remained robust as ever in his five-round determination win over Covington in December.
That Covington by no means even tried it, even when the combat seemed to be on the road within the ultimate spherical, ought to let you know all it’s good to learn about Usman’s wonderful wrestling sport.
Highly effective and Exact Strikes Make Usman Almost Unbeatable
Right here’s the factor about Usman although. He’s confirmed to be simply as efficient standing as he’s on the bottom, and that’s a scary thought for the remainder of the division.
Whereas there was some debate earlier than UFC 245 over whether or not Usman may stand up to Covington’s floor assault over 5 full rounds, there was no debate that the UFC welterweight champ had employed his personal ground-and-pound sport to maul nearly each fighter he’s confronted main as much as that combat.
instance can be UFC 235 in March 2019 the place Usman ragdolled Tyron Woodley across the cage for 25 minutes to forcefully seize the UFC’s 170-pound championship.
However beating Covington in a full-scale stand-up brawl proved definitely that Usman is among the most full fighters within the sport at this time.
In accordance with UFC Stats, Usman has landed extra vital strikes per minute than even the strike-savvy Masvidal heading into UFC 251.
Usman lands 4.60 vital strikes per minute whereas Masvidal’s price is 4.33.
At 52%, Usman additionally lands his strikes at the next share than Masvidal does, 46%, and the champ takes fewer vital strikes in return per minute (2.17 vs. 2.94), too.
Usman Has Been as Dominant as 2019 Masvidal for Entire UFC Profession
A lot has been fabricated from Masvidal’s epic 2019 run that included stoppage wins over Darren Until, Ben Askren and Nate Diaz.
To blow extra air via that trumpet, it is likely to be much more spectacular that Masvidal achieved such a surprising run in his mid-30s and after successive losses two years previous to Demian Maia and Stephen Thompson.
However the factor about Usman is that the champ’s loved Masvidal’s 2019 standing for mainly his complete profession.
— KAMARU USMAN (@USMAN84kg) July 6, 2020
Usman enters UFC 251 on July 11 having received 15 straight contests. He’s undefeated within the UFC, and he’s not misplaced in over six years.
The champ’s final 4 wins present simply what sort of fighter Masvidal is up in opposition to on Saturday evening. Over that timeframe, Usman defeated top-notch competitors together with Maia, Rafael dos Anjos, Woodley and Covington.
Solely his final combat was shut, and even that win over Covington needs to be labeled clear and definitive for Usman.
Beating Masvidal Would Solidify Usman’s Standing Amongst Elite
There’s little question Usman’s dominant run within the firm has been overshadowed by the game’s different huge stars.
In a method, Usman’s hostile takeover at 170 was even undervalued in 2019 due to the hype surrounding Masvidal’s three-fight run.
So beating Masvidal at UFC 251 would certainly assist Usman elevate the veil for a lot of.
Usman is a dominant champ in his prime years. Beating Masvidal on Struggle Island on July 11 wouldn’t actually make him elite. His 11-Zero UFC document already means he’s that.
However profitable such a giant combat in opposition to an enormous star on a large stage would assist others acknowledge what most likely already ought to have been accepted as true.
Look, the final man that stepped contained in the Octagon with Usman ended up having his mouth wired shut. That’s as a result of all “The Nigerian Nightmare” does is crack jaws and slam opponents right down to the mat with brutal drive.
Usman is already the only most dominant fighter in a division filled with legit killers. And beating Masvidal would assist extra folks discover.
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