Kamaru Usman of Nigeria has failed to regain the Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) welterweight title from Leon Edwards of Britain after losing out in a thrilling 5-round match in London at Ultimate Fight Championship -UFC 286.
The 31-year-old British MMA champion was unanimously declared winner of the 5-round match by the 3 judges who awarded him a score of 48-46, 48-46, and 47-47.
The fight was a highly technical one as Edwards thwarted all attempts by Usman “The Nigerian Nightmare”, to deliver any deadly takedown while the British fighter landed the more brutal shots to score more points as the match progress on. Usman had to revert back to defensive tactics as Edwards landed more striking kicks.
After the match, the 35-year-old Usman admitted that Edwards’ game plan as tougher despite his preparation for the match.
“I think I did enough to win the fight but you know it was a close fight, but you know he put on a hell of a great game plan, you know I have always said it from the start, I knew I would see Leon again and we did it.”
“You know I’m not done; you know I will see him again; I have always given him probs for everything he has been able to accomplish and just like me, he is a brother like myself and much respect you, London you got yourself a kind of a guy great champion,” he said.
However, he added that with an optimistic spirit that it would not take too long before he would be back in the fight, adding that he was going to let this digest and he is going to make this run again.
“It is not going to be too long, I am gonna get back with my coaches, I am one of those guys that cannot sit for too long. I am going to talk to my coaches, we will get back, sit and relax,” he said.
Usman, who lost the title to Edwards in August 2022 was highly favoured to win that match with a -425 winning favour with Edwards rated a +315 underdog. However, he fell to a shocking late fifth round knockout to mark his first loss inside the UFC.