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UFC 286: Leon Edwards defeats Kamaru Usman again to retain title

British fighter wins trilogy fight by decision

UFC Welterweight champion Leon Edwards held onto his title at UFC 286 after he overcame rival Kamaru Usman in their third-ever meeting. The British fighter defeated Usman on home soil at the O2 Arena to retain his welterweight championship.

Billed as one of the most exciting match ups this year, Usman was looking to upset Edwards and reclaim the title he lost to him at UFC 278 seven months ago. Edwards was back at home for the fight and hoped to prove that his title win last August was not a fluke.

Edwards needed a last minute TKO to win the bout in August after Usman pummeled him for much of the fight. This time, however, the roles were reversed in a way as the British fighter dominated with good offense and impressive takedown defence.

Edwards maintained a distance from Usman, attacking him with kicks while preventing him from wrestling him to the floor. He comfortably won the first round, while Usman took the second round. He received a points deduction at the end of the third round as he held onto the cage to prevent Usman from scoring a takedown.

Throughout the fourth and fifth rounds, Edwards stuck to his game plan, defending himself against takedowns while scoring points with his offensive kicks. By the end of the fifth round, the three judges awarded the fight 48-46 48-46 47-47 in favour of Leon Edwards.

Edwards has now handed Usman his first two defeats in the UFC, having lost their first meeting back in 2015. The 31-year-old is on a 12-fight win streak in the welterweight division, last losing a fight in 2015 against Usman. He is set for a fight against Colby Covington next with the welterweight title on the line.


For Kamaru Usman, a second defeat to Leon Edwards means his UFC Welterweight dominance is effectively over. The 35-year-old put on a good showing but was unable to overcome his opponent. After five title defences, he must now return to the drawing board to plot a return to the top.

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