Leon Edwards believes once he beats Kamaru Usman at UFC 286, the former champ will retire from MMA.
Edwards and Usman are set for their trilogy match in the main event of UFC 286 on Saturday in London.
The two fought back in August with Edwards becoming the new welterweight champ with a fifth-round head kick KO.
“Our mentalities are in two different places. I feel like he’s on his way out, and I was going to open the door for him, give him another path to follow his fashion dreams and follow wherever he wants to go,” Edwards said at UFC 286 media day. “I think he’s already got one, something’s out the door and I was going to add to that. Whether he retires after or not, it’s up to him.”
Although Kamaru Usman hasn’t talked about how much longer he expects to compete, ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ says Leon Edwards won’t force him to retire after Saturday night.
Instead, Usman is confident he will remind everyone who the better fighter is and beat Edwards to reclaim his belt and start another title run.
“He’s going to open the door for me because I’m the king. He’s going to open the door for me to talk through and I’m going to tell him he can come in now,” Usman responded to Edwards at media day. “No, the funny thing about that is, I feel like he is forgetting what happened 24 minutes into the last fight. Don’t you guys feel that? Of course, it was a beautiful technique and you landed it, which I’m a fan of, like damn that was beautiful, give him props for it.
“But you are forgetting what happened, what did you display in those two fights that lead you to believe you are a better mixed martial artist than me? I am on my way out, I don’t want to get punched in the face forever, that is very, very true,” Usman added in response to Edwards. “I’m not trying to do this for another 10 years, absolutely not. In that sense, yeah, I am on my way out. But I will leave when I am good, well, and ready. Until then, like the Wolf of Wall Street, you know what he said, I’m not going nowhere.”
Currently, Usman is the betting favorite to beat Edwards at UFC 286. But both men are extremely confident they will get their hand raised on Saturday and if ‘Rocky’ is correct, perhaps it’s the last time Usman fights.