UFC 286: Leon Edwards trumps Kamaru Usman to retain welterweight title in nerve-wracking main event

Leon Edwards defeated Kamaru Usman at UFC 286 on Saturday to retain the welterweight title in a thrilling main event at London’s O2 Arena.

Edwards dethroned the dominant Usman in August and stunned the Nigerian with a headkick knockout a minute from time after being controlled for most of the fight. That result followed the pair’s 2015 clash, which Usman won on points with a comfortable performance against the Jamaican-born Briton.

And so this week fans were left to guess whether Usman could once again best his successor en route to victory or Edwards could conjure another moment of martial arts magic.

Ultimately, under the O2’s impressive dome – which echoed with every roar of the London crowd – the rivals rounded off their trilogy with by far their most competitive competition.

Edwards, 31, seemed to prevail in the tense first two rounds with various calf, diagonal and body kicks before the pitch seemed to settle down after Round 3. It was in the third frame that Usman started to find his grappling form while Edwards had docked a point to hold the fence to stand.

And Edwards appeared in danger of losing more points when referee Herb Dean warned him to hold the gauntlet from Usman, who also complained about multiple alleged kicks to the groin.

Edwards’ quality endured, however, where his composure faltered at times. Though a close fourth round didn’t make the outcome any clearer, the champion stood every time Usman secured takedowns before Edwards produced an impressive final frame at a crucial point.

“Rocky” denied his challenger multiple takedowns while at times jabbing the 35-year-old with uppercuts and leg kicks while Usman continued to push forward for a pivotal moment.

Ultimately, Edwards was named the winner of the majority decision, with the judges’ scorecards being 48-46, 48-46, 48-48.

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https://www.independent.co.uk/sport/ufc/edwards-usman-result-score-ufc-286-b2303723.html UFC 286: Leon Edwards trumps Kamaru Usman to retain welterweight title in nerve-wracking main event


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