LONDON – Leon Edwards thinks his rivalry with Kamaru Usman has come to an end.
The UFC welterweight champion doesn’t see himself fighting Usman (20-3 MMA, 15-2 UFC) again following their latest bout. Edwards (21-3 MMA, 13-2 UFC) defeated “The Nigerian Nightmare” in a majority decision in the UFC 286 main event at The O2 in London. The title win moved Edwards to 2-1 in his trilogy with Usman.
Usman said in his in-cage interview following the defeat that he will meet Edwards again in the future. “Rocky” disagrees.
“Probably not. Probably not,” Edwards told reporters at the UFC 286 post-fight news conference. “It’s been three fights now. I want to move forward in my career. I look toward different fights.”
There was plenty said between Edwards and Usman throughout the three-fight series. But at the end of the day, Edwards said he has no bad blood with Usman and wishes him well.
“It’s just competitive,” Edwards said. “I wish him well in whatever he chooses to do next. There was never no beef between me and Kamaru. We both just fought to see who the better man is. That was it. You heard his words after the fight, and I wish him well. This sport is hard, so yeah – respect to him.”
UFC 286 was a momentous night for Edwards. Not only did he retain his welterweight title and close out the trilogy against Usman, but he also headlined a UFC pay-per-view event on home soil.
“It’s amazing,” Edwards said regarding UFC 286. “It’s every kid’s dream to be able to live this moment out. I said it all week. I truly believe this is my era now. It’s been a long time since I lost a fight – seven, eight years. So to be able to come back to my hometown, have the crowd go crazy all week – the weigh-ins, press conference screaming ‘Headshot, dead’ – it was madness. It’s a dream come true.”
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 286.