Kamaru Usman and Leon “Rocky” Edwards will go at it again on Aug. 20 at Vivint Arena in Salt Lake City, Utah, and the bout promises to be an electric one.
Usman will defend his UFC Welterweight title against Edwards as “The Nigerian Nightmare” will put his 15-fight win streak on the line against Edwards’ 10-fight win streak, which began after Usman beat Edwards in their Dec. 19, 2015 encounter.
Edwards is hoping for redemption in the bout and believes the Aug. 20 fight is the perfect time to take on Usman, as he told Sports Illustrated’s Justin Barrasso. Usman has been the through the gauntlet since winning the welterweight title over Tyron Woodley on March 2, 2019. The 35-year-old has defended his title against Colby Covington twice, Jorge Masvidal twice and Gilbert Burns.
“He’s been in so many wars,” Edwards told Barrasso in a story published Tuesday. “He’s been hurt by Colby, hurt by Gilbert. His body is showing that. I’m fresher, I’m bigger, and I’m excited to prove to the world that I’m number one.”
Edwards’ last fight was a unanimous decision victory over Nate Diaz at UFC 263 on June 12, 2021 — the fight was Diaz’s last fight before his upcoming retirement bout against Khamzat Chimaev at UFC 279 on Sept. 10. While the 30-year-old’s logic is sound, the betting odds still peg Usman as the clear favorite in the bout.
DraftKings Sportsbook has Usman listed at a -380 favorite to come out the winner of the fight, and Edwards is a +380 underdog heading into UFC 278. This means a $100 bet on Usman would only pay out $126.32, but a $100 bet on Edwards to become the new UFC Welterweight champion would pay out $480.
The answer to who comes out the victor will be decided Saturday in the octagon as one fighter’s legacy will likely be strengthened with a victory.