Leon Edwards promises that fans will see a completely different fight when he takes on Kamaru Usman in London.
UFC middleweight champion Leon Edwards is preparing for his very first title defense. Since winning the belt back in August, the UFC has been planning his title defense to be held in the UK. Now they finally have a date set. The plan is for Edwards to rematch Kamaru Usman at UFC 286 in the O2 Arena in London on March 18. This will be the third time these two men face each other in the Octagon, but Edwards is promising to show fans something new this time around.
The fight between Usman and Edwards has been the plan since their last fight, but locking down a date seemed to be problematic. Now the date is set, but Usman’s health is a concern. He was seen recently wearing a cast on his hand, but his team has been assuring the public that he will be ready to go. Edwards seconds this by saying the UFC has told him the fight will go on as planned.
“Yeah, 100 percent, at least that’s what I’ve been told, that’s what me and my team have been told” he said to Michael Bisping on YouTube. “I spoke to the UFC last week they said the fight is on, he’s already training for the fight. So I’m aiming toward that. If something changes in the meantime then we’ll go from there but now I’m am focusing on that trilogy again in London.”
Leon Edwards does not see the next bout with Usman playing out the same as the last
Now that the trilogy fight is on pace to happen in a few months, the next step is getting prepared. In the last bout, it seemed that Usman was dominating from the beginning to the fifth round. In the last minute of the bout, Edwards landed a perfect head kick that knocked Usman out and secured him the title. Since the fight, he has taken a closer look at the first five rounds and also the location where the fight took place. Edwards felt that the altitude in Salt Lake City contributed to his performance, and now he is promising a whole new look in London.
“It’ll be a totally different fight, I’ve said it, my coaches said it. I knew going into the fight that the altitude would play a part, but I didn’t know it would play that big of a part,” he said. “I’ve never lost in the UK, amateur or pro, so I’m excited. I love fighting for my friends and my family and yeah, I just think it will be a totally different fight, so I think if you’re going in there thinking it’s gonna be the same fight you are in for a rude awakening.”
Edwards has not lost a fight since Dec. of 2015. That last loss was to Usman, in their very first meeting. Now that each holds a win over the other, it will be interesting to see what the third fight brings. Edwards appears to have the upper hand, holding the belt and fighting in front of his home crowd of London.