In a matchup that’s long been expected, Edwards (19-3 MMA, 11-2 UFC) and Usman (20-2 MMA, 15-1 UFC) will have their rubber match in the main event of the March 18 fight card, which takes place at The O2 in London. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+.
UFC president Dana White confirmed the booking during Saturday’s UFC Fight Night 217 post-fight news conference.
Edwards will attempt to make his first title defense on home soil after he scored the 2022 Knockout of the Year against Usman at UFC 278 in August. The fight extended his unbeaten streak to 10 fights, which dated back to his first encounter with Usman.
Usman will attempt to get some redemption on Edwards after seeing his 15-fight UFC winning streak brought to an end. “The Nigerian Nightmare” was en route to beating Edwards before he was caught by the shocking head kick finish. Despite the loss, he still holds a victory over his rival in the form of a unanimous decision at UFC on FOX 17 in December 2015.
The latest UFC 286 lineup now includes:
Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman – for welterweight title
Rafael Fiziev vs. Justin Gaethje
Roman Dolidze vs. Marvin Vettori
Gunnar Nelson vs. Daniel Rodriguez
Luana Carolina vs. Joanne Wood
Malcolm Gordon vs. Jake Hadley
Jennifer Maia vs. Casey O’Neill
Jai Herbert vs. Ludovit Klein
Lerone Murphy vs. Nathaniel Wood
Chris Duncan vs. Michal Figlak
Veronica Macedo vs. Juliana Miller
For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 286.