Leon Edwards
Rocky

England

To fight Chimaev
WelterweightOther
October 23, 2020
Edwards will fight Khamzat Chimaev at UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada on Dec. 19, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Edwards is 18-3 as a professional, winning his past eight bouts. Most recently, he defeated Rafael dos Anjos by unanimous decision on July 20 during UFC on ESPN 4. Edwards' opponent, Chimaev, is 9-0 as a pro. He most recently defeated Gerald Meerschaert on Sep. 19 during UFC Fight Night 178 by a KO in the first round.
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Dropped from UFC rankings
WelterweightOther
October 22, 2020
Edwards has been removed from the UFC Welterweight rankings, Marcel Dorff of MMADNA reports.
ANALYSIS
Edwards nearly got his chance against Tyron Woodley back in March before it was ultimately cancelled due to COVID-19. Currently on a eight-fight winning streak, Edwards hasn't competed since a victory against Rafael dos Anjos in July of 2019. The inactivity could be one reason Edwards was removed from the rankings, though we've seen fighters sidelined much longer and still maintain their spots. While Edwards has been adamant in requesting a title shot he absolutely deserves, it appears the UFC has Gilbert Burns next in line for a shot at Kamaru Usman's belt. It's been rumored Edwards has since turned down other fights, so his removal from the rankings could simply be a pressure tactic by the UFC to get him to accept a non-title bout.
Fight cancelled
WelterweightOther
March 15, 2020
Edwards won't fight Tyron Woodley at O2 Arena in London this weekend, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
As many expected, Edwards' scheduled match against counterpart Tyron Woodley this weekend won't take place due to the coronavirus. It's unknown if the fight will be rescheduled for a future date.
Status uncertain for London
WelterweightOther
March 15, 2020
Edwards' scheduled fight against Tyron Woodley -- which was set to take place Saturday at O2 Arena in London -- is in jeopardy following the event's relocation to the US, Ariel Helwani of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Edwards had been in line for the golden opportunity of facing a former UFC champion on his home turf, but now much of the fight card is in limbo with the event being moved to combat concerns about the coronavirus. Edwards had been listed as a (-155) betting favorite as of Sunday afternoon, and a win would have put him right at the front of the line in terms of the title picture. A US work visa another obstacle for Edwards given the recently-instated travel ban, as Edwards last competed in the US last July. Stay tuned for further updates regarding the status of this and other scheduled fights.
Inching closer to title shot
WelterweightOther
December 26, 2019
Edwards has agreed to fight former champion Tyron Woodley in a welterweight matchup at UFC London on March 21, Mike Bohn of MMAJunkie.com reports.
ANALYSIS
Edwards is on an eight-fight winning streak, but before giving him a chance for a rematch with champion Kamaru Usman, UFC brass will make him get past the previous champion in the division. Edwards has been one of the more active fighters over the last few years, while Woodley will have spent a year on the sidelines (due to a hand injury) by the time he makes the walk to the cage against Edwards. Both men sport a 74-inch reach, but Edwards will have a distinct height advantage. Edwards also has statistical advantages in striking volume, striking defense and offensive wrestling volume, though an argument could be made that Woodley's caliber of competition has been significantly better. This matchup will likely determine who gets the next chance at Usman's belt later on in 2020.
Exceptional performance against RDA
WelterweightOther
July 20, 2019
Edwards defeated Rafael dos Anjos via unanimous decision (50-45, 49-46, 49-46) at UFC San Antonio on Saturday.
ANALYSIS
Edwards surprised many by going for the takedown early and spent the majority of the first round in top position. He took a few hard leg kicks in that period, but likely won the round. Edwards continued to build momentum in Round 2, using a vicious left elbow to open a big cut under the right eye of dos Anjos. He continued to attack that cut with his jab to the point where it required a doctor's attention between rounds. While dos Anjos continued to land hard kicks to the lead leg and had some success with the takedown, Edwards appeared to be getting the better of the striking exchanges. Edwards didn't appear to fade much in the Championship Rounds, appearing calm and collected while continuing to win the striking battle. He caught a flying knee attempt from RDA in the fourth, which allowed him to earn a takedown, even though his time in top control was short-lived. The fifth round was all about risk management, with Edwards knowing he was likely up on the scorecards. He showed exceptional cardio while initiating clinches and eating clock along the way. Edwards evaded the late forward movement of RDA, and ended up hanging on for the victory. While Edwards does have a loss to current champion Kamaru Usman on his record, Saturday marked his eighth consecutive victory. It should be top-10 opponents for him from here on out. He called out Jorge Masvidal in his post-fight interview, but it's tough to imagine Masvidal accepting that fight.