UFC 286: Leon Edwards retains welterweight title by defeating Kamaru Usman by majority decision

Leon Edwards retained his welterweight title as he beat challenger Kamaru Usman at UFC 286 by majority decision to extend his unbeaten streak to 12 in his first defence of the title.

Judges scored the trilogy fight at the O2 Arena in London 48-46, 48-46, 47-47 in favour of the Briton, who landed the cleaner blows as their third fight went the distance.

“I knew I could go out there and take his shots,” Edwards said. “Even when he was pressuring, not much happened.”

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Hear from UFC welterweight champion Edwards and Dana White after UFC 286

This was their third meeting, more than seven years after the first fight won by Usman.

Edwards made an encouraging start, connecting with two heavy body kicks in the opening round. The 31-year-old’s greater speed unsettled Usman, but the challenger took Edwards down briefly in round two before both fighters traded some heavy blows.

Usman grappled Edwards to the floor again early in the third and the latter was docked a point for grabbing the fence, which led many to believe the points were tied 28-28 heading into the fourth round.

Image: Edwards celebrates his victory

A similar pattern unfolded in the fourth, which was just as tight, with Edwards looking to keep his distance as Usman tried to get in close.

Latest 7.MMA Stories

  • ‘Oh, he’s talking now!’ | Leon Edwards & Kamaru Usman share intense face off for final time!

  • Edwards vs Usman 3: Trilogy clash can provide more fireworks and a KO finish, says Mark Weir and Christian Leroy

  • Jeff Molina becomes first active male UFC fighter to say he is LGBTQ+

  • Kamaru Usman says Leon Edwards ‘knows I’m better’ and calls London ‘home’ before UFC 286

  • Molly ‘Meatball’ McCann: I want to empower women in MMA | ‘I feel bulletproof despite recent UFC loss’

  • Jon Jones returns after three-year absence to win UFC heavyweight title in first round

Edwards evaded two more takedown attempts in the final round and caught Usman with an uppercut, but took a hit to the body as his title defence went down to the wire.

Edwards had ended Usman’s long reign as champion with a kick to the Nigerian’s head and neck in the fifth round in Salt Lake City in August at UFC 278.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Usman says he is not done and will see Edwards again

“I think I did enough to win the fight,” Usman, 35, told BT Sport after the defeat. “I’m not done.”

He also showed good sportsmanship when talking about Edwards’ win: “I knew it was a close fight. Great game plan. I’ve always said it from the start, I knew I’d see Leon again and I’m not done. I’ll see him again.

Please use Chrome browser for a more accessible video player

Edwards celebrated his win over Usman at UFC 268 with actor Tom Holland

“I’ve always given him props for everything he’s been able to accomplish. He’s just like me. It’s in his blood. Much respect, London. You’ve got yourself a great champion and a hell of a guy.”

Sourse: skysports.com

No votes yet.
Please wait...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *