MMAnytt Khamzat Chimaev Leon Edwards (1)
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Team Leon Edwards hints at fight against “cash cow” Khamzat Chimaev!

✔ Could pass over Kamaru Usman in favour of the rising UFC star: "We're in a dirty game"

Leon Edwards might pass over Kamaru Usman in favour of Khamzat Chimaev for his first title defence, says coach Dave Lovell.

“Rocky” Edwards delivered the year’s biggest upset in the form of a perfectly placed head kick against Usman at UFC 278, knocking the champion out cold in the last minute of the very last round. UFC president Dana White has promised Usman an immediate rematch following the fight, and hopes to arrange a historic event in the UK for the expected trilogy. However, depending on when the former champion is fight ready, rising star Khamzat could be the next man in line at 170 lbs, assuming he gets past Nate Diaz at UFC 279 this weekend.

“If that’s the script, so be it,” coach Lovell said of Usman during an episode of The MMA Hour. “But you never know how these things work. There’s a lot of wheeling and dealing behind closed doors. We’re in a dirty game, and you’ve got to know to play your cards and keep them tight to your chest. You know, I know, they’re gearing up this Khamzat guy. He’s their next cash cow, and they’re fast-tracking him. So listen, it’s not a foregone conclusion that we’re going to get Usman.”

“He’s never been knocked out, Lovell continued. “It’s one thing a fighter getting dropped and getting counted out while he’s still conscious, or taken a body shot and couldn’t get up from it, or getting stopped on his feet with the referee pulled the other guy off him, but when you get knocked out in a fight where you just wake up and think, ‘What’s happened?’ Let me tell you, it’s a life-changing event, and I’m not just talking about fighting, I’m talking life itself.”

Khamzat and Edwards have been booked to fight twice before, but the fight was cancelled both times due to first Edwards and later Khamzat contracting Covid-19. It now seems as if they could be matched up for a third time, depending on how the division looks after the pay-per-view event this weekend!

But before there can be any talk of a fight between Edwards and Khamzat, the third ranked welterweight must defeat Stockton native Diaz at UFC 279. “Borz” is the overwhelming favourite leading up to the welterweight collision, however it is worth noting that Diaz has a previous history of delivering upsets in big fights!

 

Which fight would you rather see: Leon Edwards vs. Khamzat Chimaev or Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman?

 


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