Longtime boxing commentator Teddy Atlas doesn’t think UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman would hold his own in a boxing ring.
Usman is coming off of his win over Colby Covington at UFC 268, winning the highly-anticipated rematch via a unanimous decision. Leading up to the fight, he teased a potential crossover fight against arguably the best boxer on the planet today, Canelo Alvarez.
Usman has also had his fair share of back-and-forths with the polarizing YouTuber turned boxer Jake Paul. Following his win over Tyron Woodley, Paul called Usman out for a fight in the boxing ring.
But Atlas doesn’t think it would be a good idea for Usman to try another venture in the ring. During a recent interview with The Schmo, Atlas evaluated Usman’s chances in boxing if he were to make the move.
Kamaru Usman Shouldn’t Try Boxing, According To Teddy Atlas
“He’s got physicality, he’s very strong,” Atlas said. “He’s a decent puncher and he’s not a bad striker – although I think a lot of his strengths are on the mat with his knowledge there and his physicality.
“You throw him in there with a B-level guy or even a good journeyman guy, no. I don’t want to upset anyone with the fans out there, but as long as the rules are strictly boxing, no he wouldn’t be able to have tremendous success there.” (h/t MMA Junkie)
Usman wrapped up a legendary 2021 at the UFC’s top pound-for-pound fighter. With Jon Jones sidelined, and former lightweight champion Khabib Nurmagomedov further committing to his retirement, Usman emerged as arguably the face of the UFC today.
Usman’s striking has vastly improved in recent years, as evidenced by knockouts over Gilbert Burns and Jorge Masvidal. It’s unclear if he’ll ultimately try out boxing, but one of the sport’s biggest experts doesn’t think it’s the right move.
Do you agree with Teddy Atlas?