‘I Know When Its Time for Me to Walk Away’- Kamaru Usman Hints He Might Retire Soon

Published 04/16/2021, 1:37 PM EDT
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 14: Kamaru Usman of Nigeria enters the octagon during the UFC 245 event at T-Mobile Arena on December 14, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)


Kamaru Usman, the reigning Welterweight UFC champion, will defend his title at UFC 261.‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ will battle his former opponent Jorge Masvidal in a highly anticipated rematch. This time, ‘Gamebred’ will go through a complete training camp, unlike the first meeting, where Masvidal fought Usman on a brief notice of 6 days. Masvidal himself claimed that if he would have gotten a full camp, the result could have changed.

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Now as the fight is closer than ever, Marc Raimondi from ESPN MMA interviewed Usman. Where Usman makes a shocking statement about his UFC career. He says, “Once I feel like I full filled my destiny when it comes to that. Then you know I have no problem walking away I am not gonna stick around”.

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Kamaru Usman also said, “I know when it’s time for me to walk away. I am gonna walk away Georges St-Pierre is already kind of given that example and now my brother Khabib has done the same thing”.

Kamaru Usman tells his body doesn’t feel the same as it felt at 23

‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ looks to follow in the footsteps of his good friend Khabib Nurmagomedov. Nurmagomedov retired as in his prime while he was the champion, which is a rare thing in the combat world. Most fighters retire after the age of 35-40. Georges St-Pierre is another splendid example of fighters retiring in their prime.

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – DECEMBER 14: Kamaru Usman of Nigeria enters the octagon during the UFC 245 event at T-Mobile Arena on December 14, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Usman said, “my body doesn’t feel the way it felt at 23. At 23 years old I can just get up and cold jump into a workout. Go crazy in the workout, not stretch, go back and eat and just chill. I can’t do that I get to take 30 -45 minutes I gotta warm up pre-warm up before the warm-up.

“I gotta do that and then be trained, and after training, I gotta stretch and cool it down. You know I understand that I am honest with myself to where I know that. At the end of the day, I don’t wanna get punched in the face forever”.

Many fighters make the mistake of going too far with their careers. They don’t consider age as a factor and push their bodies to the limit. This sometimes results in unnecessary setbacks that a fighter should not be facing in the ultimate phase of their career.

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Anderson Silva is a popular example, ‘The Spider’ faced 7 defeats in the closing phase of his career. He took a lot of damage which could influence many problems in the old age of a fighter. Kamaru Usman is smart enough to realize the mistakes made by his fellow fighters. Therefore, ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ could retire soon if everything goes according to his plans.

The question is, how many times will Kamaru Usman defend his title before actually saying goodbye to the sport?

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Saurabh Singh

89 articles

Saurabh Singh Laledia is an MMA enthusiast who works as a UFC writer for EssentiallySports. His passion for the UFC infused with his knowledge of various fight styles such as Muay Thai and Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu motivated him to pursue a career in combat sports journalism, as it would be where he could exhibit his expert views and unbiased opinions whilst keeping the fan’s perspective alive. He started watching the sport at UFC 53 in 2005 when ‘The Ace’ Rich Franklin beat Evan Turner to claim the belt and has traced the journey of the middleweight title right from 'The Spider' to 'The Last Stylebender'.

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