Morning Report: Khabib Nurmagomedov unsure how Kamaru Usman is dealing with KO loss: ‘A lot of people don’t recover’

Kamaru Usman is in an unfamiliar position after UFC 278 last Saturday.

The ‘Nigerian Nightmare”s dominating reign of terror over the UFC’s welterweight division came to an abrupt end in their rematch with Leon Edwards in their main event showdown. After a first-round scare, Usman dug deep like a true champion, firmly securing the next 19 minutes of action in his favor.

Needing a hit from Hail Mary to score the upset, Edwards nailed just that with a perfect high kick to the dome, knocking Usman unconscious for the first time in his 22-fight career. The loss prevented the 35-year-old from equaling Anderson Silva’s promotional record of 16 straight wins and being only the second loss of his career overall.

As many champions before Usman also learned the hard way, time at the top is limited…unless your name is Khabib Nurmagomedov who retired undefeated with a 29-0 record. After watching the result, “The Eagle” fears it will be difficult for his Dominance MMA stablemate to return in the same way fans have grown accustomed to seeing.

“I’m aware that the trilogy is already in the works,” Nurmagomedov told Ушатайка (h/t Mr. MMA Shorts). “I believe he can beat Leon Edwards. But after such a knockout, a lot of people don’t get over it. It will be interesting to see. But I would love to see the trilogy. They are 1-1.

With Usman having defended the title five times and the way he has, in addition to that December 2015 victory over Edwards, it seems all too likely that a trilogy fight will be next for the division. UFC President Dana White expressed in the immediate aftermath of the event his interest in taking the fight to Edwards’ home in England and the possibilities became endless for the second UFC title holder of the country.

For Nurmagomedov, he too is no stranger to hype and spotlight similar to Usman. Both found themselves atop the UFC pound-for-pound list in their heyday, tagged with claims of all-time great status, only the latter now plummeting.

If anything, the end of Usman’s title reign acts as another stark reminder of how difficult it is to not only get to the top of MMA, but to stay on top.

“I watched the UFC [278] and honestly, I was surprised. You could even say a little upset,” Nurmagomedov said. “I have a good friendship with Kamaru and of course it was tough watching the best fighter in the world – who he is right now – getting knocked out badly with 50 seconds left in the fight.

“I thought that’s basically how the contest will end the way it did for everyone. But these fights are MMA and you can see for yourself, for a second, that it all went wrong. Put his hand in the wrong place, your lights could go out if the proper defense isn’t in place. You can wake up in the locker room and it’s over.


Mad. Leon Edwards says body ‘just stopped’ at UFC 278, thanks coaches for comeback: ‘They knew how to push my buttons’

Legend. Merab Dvalishvili says Jose Aldo retired after UFC 278 loss: He said, “I guess I’m done.”

Odds. Kamaru Usman opens as heavy favorite in potential trilogy against Leon Edwards

Contract. Paulo Costa confirms he has one fight left in UFC deal, whether or not to re-sign ‘depends on money’

Soccer. Dana White reveals he orchestrated the deal to bring Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski to the Las Vegas Raiders, but Jon Gruden ‘missed’ it


MMA time.

UFC 279 trailer.

Bellator emotional moments.

Mikuru Asakura prepares for Floyd Mayweather.

The future of Merab Dvalishvili.

Reactions to victory.


Welcome.

Styling in SLC.

Yin-yang.

Cupcake Mom.

Alright, Dustin.

That’s all.

Truer words…

Oh.

Sure.

Glory.

Mulan will be back.

Just gym stuff.

Kings.


Jake Hadley (8-1) against Carlos Candelario (8-1); UFC Fight Night, November 5


I still can’t get over Costa’s stupidity against Rockhold. I really feel like Luke became a bit of a “what if” after being lied to by Bisping.

Thanks for reading!


Results from last week:

Friday: 68% of the total 512 votes answered “Paulo Costa” to the question “Who wins tomorrow?” Costa def. Luke Rockhold via unanimous decision in the UFC 278 co-main event.

Thursday: 66% of the 651 total votes answered “Jose Aldo” to the question “Who wins this weekend?” Merab Dvalishvili defeated. Aldo by unanimous decision at UFC 278.

Wednesday: 47% of 691 total votes answered “Yes” to the question “If Khamzat Chimaev beats Nate Diaz at UFC 279, will he face the winner of Kamaru Usman vs. Edwards 2?”

Tuesday: 74% of 712 total votes answered “Kamaru Usman” to the question “Who wins this weekend?” Leon Edwards beats. Usman via fifth-round knockout (head kick) in the main event of UFC 278.

Monday: 77% of the 888 total votes answered “No” to the question “If he wins on Saturday, will Luke Rockhold get a title shot?” Costa def. Rockhold by unanimous decision in the co-main event of UFC 278.

Today’s exit poll:

Survey

Will Edwards v Usman 3 take place in England?


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