After UFC 263, should Leon Edwards take another fight or wait for his title shot?

Leon Edwards

On the main card of UFC 263, we saw a welterweight showdown between Leon Edwards (19-3, 1 NC) and Nate Diaz (20-13). The fight between these two was the first five-round non-title fight that wasn’t a main event.

For the first 24 minutes of the fight at UFC 263, Leon Edwards showed why he’s so special. Edwards was able to use his leg kicks, elbows, and sweeps to completely dominate Nate Diaz. Diaz landed shots here and there, but it was all Leon Edwards.

However, with one minute left, the fight completely changed. Diaz fired a perfect 1-2 down the middle that completely rocked Leon Edwards. Edwards was on wobbly legs and needed the fence to stay up. Diaz tried to finish the fight and Edwards barely survived.

Edwards still looked a little dazed after the final bell at UFC 263. However, all of the work he had done over the first 24 minutes paid off. Leon Edwards won 49-46 on all three scorecards to pick up the biggest win of his career.

What does Leon Edwards do after UFC 263?

With this victory, Leon Edwards is now 9-0, 1 NC in his last ten fights. The last man to defeat him inside the octagon is the current UFC welterweight champion, Kamaru Usman (19-1). Leon Edwards has done enough to earn himself a title shot against Usman.

However, he’s not going to be next for the champion. Dana White has made it very clear that Colby Covington (16-2) is getting the next shot at Kamaru Usman. At the moment, the promotion is targeting late summer/early fall for that rematch.

With that, it’s very likely that Leon Edwards wouldn’t get his UFC title shot until the beginning of 2022. So, should Edwards wait or should he take another fight? I personally lean towards him taking another fight and there’s one fight that he should take.

I think the promotion should book him against Jorge Masvidal (35-15). There’s heat between the two men after their backstage incident in 2019 and Masvidal just fought for the title. Leon Edwards didn’t really get over in his win at UFC 263. He could use a highlight reel performance against another star to help build up his stock before a title shot.

That said, Edwards has been very vocal about wanting the title shot next. He might need some convincing to take a fight with Masvidal, but ultimately, I think it would be the best thing for him.

What’s next for Nate Diaz after UFC 263?

This past Saturday at UFC 263, Nate Diaz (20-13) took on Leon Edwards (19-3, 1 NC) on the main card. The fight between the two men was the first five-round non-title fight that wasn’t a main event in UFC history.

Diaz requested the fight be five rounds and that is exactly what he got. The reason Diaz requested the five rounds is because he’s notoriously a slow starter. Nate Diaz is normally a guy who really comes on strong in the main event rounds.

The last time we saw Diaz was at UFC 244 when he fought Jorge Masvidal (35-15). That night, a doctor called an end to the fight due to a cut above Diaz’s eye. While Masvidal controlled the early part of the fight, Diaz was coming on at the end of the third before the fight was stopped.

On Saturday night, Leon Edwards was dominating Nate Diaz throughout the fight. Edwards was throwing brutal leg kicks and he even used some trips to get Diaz to the ground. Brutal elbows cut Diaz above his eye and on the side of his head.

However, after being dominated for almost five rounds, Diaz almost pulled off the unthinkable at UFC 263. Diaz through a perfect 1-2 down the middle and Edwards was rocked badly with a minute left in the final round.

Diaz pointed at Edwards and stocked him as “Rocky” could hardly stand on his feet. In all honesty, Diaz wasted valuable time at UFC 263 after he hurt Edwards. Had he really just gone all out, I think he could’ve gotten the finish. However, the fight went to the cards and Edwards escaped with a decision.

What’s next after UFC 263?

Nate Diaz might be the only fighter on the UFC roster who can lose and his star continues to grow. Conor McGregor (22-5) is the biggest star in the history of the sport, but even his star doesn’t grow after a loss.

After UFC 263, Diaz told the media that he wanted to fight again in three or four months. Diaz also made it clear that he wants to fight top level competition in his next fight. What that, who should the UFC pair him with?

It still feels like there’s unfinished business between Diaz and Masvidal. There also feels like there’s unfinished business with Diaz and McGregor. Should McGregor lose to Poirier at UFC 264, I could see the promotion booking the trilogy between the two men since they are 1-1.

I could also see the UFC looking to do the BMF rematch. That was a fight they originally were looking at in 2020, but the fight fell through. Given the type of fights Diaz likes to have, those are the two opponents that make a lot of sense.

UFC getting closer to booking the return of Nick Diaz

Nick Diaz (26-9, 2 NC) is getting closer and closer to his UFC return. Back in April, Diaz met with Dana White to talk about his fighting future. Diaz was interested in returning to the octagon, but Dana White wasn’t convinced that Diaz would actually fight.

In the past, Diaz has mentioned that he was interested in returning to the UFC. However, a deal never materialized to make it happen. With that, White was cautious to believe that Diaz would actually step into an octagon in 2021.

However, the UFC president seems to be changing his turn. In speaking with UFC Arabia, White talked about the return of Nick Diaz. White not only thinks things are moving in the right direction, but he is certain Diaz will fight this year.

“You never hear me say that, ever,” White said. “You say, ‘Do you think Nick Diaz will fight this year?,’ and ‘absolutely, positively not’ is what I usually say. The matchmakers have (spoken to Diaz) and I don’t know where we’re at on it, but it’s looking promising,” White said.

Nick Diaz’s UFC Return

Assuming Nick Diaz makes his UFC return this year, the attention then turns to potential opponents. In my opinion, there are a couple of options that should be really attractive to the promotion.

One of the options is former UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler (28-15, 1 NC). Like Nick Diaz, Lawler is up there in age. Lawler is 39 while Nick Diaz is 37 years old. The two of them fought extremely early in their UFC careers with Diaz getting the knockout win.

Their first fight came all the way back in 2004. Both men are extremely popular and it would be a fun fight for the long-time fans of both men. The other option for the UFC would be a much bigger fight, but it might be hard to put together.

That fight would be pairing Nick Diaz against Jorge Masvidal (35-15). Masvidal has history with Diaz’s younger brother Nate and he also has his own history with Nick. Long before Jorge Masvidal and Nate Diaz fought, the UFC tried to book Nick Diaz against Masvidal.

However, that fight never came together. If Nick Diaz wants to get right back in the mix, Jorge Masvidal is the way to do it. Either one of those fights would excite me as a fight fan and I would be willing to bet that it’s two matchups the UFC is looking at.

After another solid win at UFC Vegas 26, what’s next for Neil Magny?

This past Saturday at UFC Vegas 26, we saw a big welterweight contest between Neil Magny (25-8) and Geoff Neal (13-4). These two were originally supposed to fight last year, but Neal had to pull out due to some health issues.

2020 was a great year for Neil Magny who returned after a USADA issue. Magny went a perfect 3-0 inside the octagon with a big win over former UFC welterweight champion Robbie Lawler.

On the heels of those three wins, Magny had a main event slot booked against Michael Chiesa back in January. Chiesa halted all of the Magny momentum and was able to pickup the decision win.

This matchup at UFC Vegas 26 was a big opportunity for Magny to shake off that loss and get back on track. To be honest, I was worried about how Magny would do with someone like Geoff Neal.

Geoff Neal is great about pressuring his opponents and throwing a ton of heat in his shots. Historically, those type of fighters have given Neil Magny problems. However, Neal proved to be no problem for Magny on Saturday night.

Magny was able to work his jab and keep Neal at distance from landing anything major. Ultimately, Magny walked away with a clean decision victory at UFC Vegas 26 and he’s right back on track.

What’s next after UFC Vegas 26?

With the victory on Saturday, Magny has risen to eighth in the UFC’s welterweight rankings. With that ranking, it’s time for Magny to get a shot against someone near or around the top five.

However, there is one name that could show up outside the top ten. That name is Khamzat Chimaev (9-0). Chimaev has been vocal about wanting to fight Magny and Magny has been vocal about wanting to fight Chimaev.

Chimeav is set to return sometime this summer and if Magny wants to fight, the UFC will definitely make that matchup happen. Another name that could make sense for Magny is Jorge Masvidal (35-15).

I know that might throw some people off, but at the end of the day, Masvidal is ranked seventh currently. Only one spot ahead of Magny and he’s coming off of a brutal knockout loss. A fight with Magny could be good for all parties involved.

The other opponent which would make a lot of sense is Vicente Luque (20-7-1). Luque has won three and a row and is currently ranked fifth in the welterweight division. A fight between the two would generate a new top contender for the UFC.

UFC: Jorge Masvidal says he ‘has to’ fight again in 2021; Interested in potential Nick Diaz matchup

This past Saturday at UFC 261, Jorge Masvidal (35-15) suffered his first knockout loss inside the octagon. The man who handed him that loss is also the man who has now beat Gamebred twice in a row, Kamaru Usman (19-1).

The knockout loss was the first time that someone has put Masvidal to sleep with strikes. We have seen Masvidal briefly floored before, but never has anyone completely shut the lights out. Kamaru Usman did just that at UFC 261.

Now, Masvidal is left wondering what’s next. Gamebred sat down with ESPN’s Ariel Helwani today to talk about the fight and what the future holds for him. Make no mistake about it, while he’s hurting emotionally, Gamebred isn’t going anywhere.

“I’ll definitely fight again this year. I have to…As it was, if it wasn’t for this suspension and this knockout, I would’ve been fighting three or four times this year. It’s something I wanted to do. If I can at least get one more fight this year, I’ll be happy.”

It’s clear that Masvidal is still going to be a factor in the UFC‘s welterweight division. He also told Helwani that he wants to wait to call out his opponent because he wants to call out someone realistic based on the welterweight landscape. Although, when asked about Nick Diaz (26-9, 2 NC), Gamebred said he would be down.

UFC Future for Masvidal

Nick Diaz was in attendance at UFC 261 and Dana White said after the fights that Diaz wanted to return to the octagon. In fact, they were meeting after the event was over. When Helwani asked about Diaz, Masvidal said he would definitely be interested.

“Definitely, Nick is a stud. (If) Nick wants to throw down, I’m more than willing to throw down. Like I said, I’m going to do it on my time. If Nick wants to fight near the end of this year, what can I say, I’m here. If you wanna do right by your brother, let’s go.”

After Masvidal defeated Nick’s younger brother Nate at UFC 244, Nick Diaz told Ariel Helwani that he wanted to get that fight back for his family. He wasn’t happy with the words Masvidal used following the win and he wanted to fight him.

Of course, at one point in the past, it looked like the UFC was putting that fight together. Dana White broke the news to reporters that the UFC was close to finalizing Nick Diaz – Jorge Masvidal at UFC 235 back in 2018.

Of course, the deal fell apart and the fight never happened. Gamebred went on to fight Darren Till and the rest is history. However, with Diaz setting up to return and Masvidal needing an opponent, perhaps the fight makes sense.

Time will tell, but I’d say that Nick Diaz is definitely in the running for Gamebred’s next fight.

After UFC 261, the table is set for Kamaru Usman – Colby Covington 2

This past Saturday at UFC 261, Kamaru Usman (19-1) defended his title against Jorge Masvidal (35-15). The fight was a rematch from last July when Kamaru Usman defeated Masvidal by decision on Fight Island.

That fight was put together on short notice and due to the way the fight went, both men wanted to run things back with a full camp. UFC 261 had a drastically different outcome but with the same winner.

To the surprise of many, Kamaru Usman knocked Masvidal out cold on the feet. Heading into UFC 261, everyone thought that Masvidal would have the striking advantage. However, Usman put him away doing what Masvidal does best.

With the Gamebred chapter closed, it’s on to another rematch for Kamaru Usman. Before last weekend’s PPV, Dana White said that Colby Covington (16-2) would be next in line for the UFC welterweight title. 

White reiterated these comments in his post-fight press conference. While Usman talked around the rematch, it’s clear that the fight between the two top welterweight is what’s next for the UFC.

When will the UFC make it happen?

White didn’t have a timeline for the UFC welterweight title fight, but Colby Covington has come out and said there is no reason to delay it. Usman came out of the fight last Saturday unscathed and Covington is ready to go.

Realistically, I think the UFC will put this fight together in either August or September and you can expect a heated buildup. In my opinion, these are the two best welterweights in the world and there first fight was extremely competitive.

Back at UFC 245 in December of 2019, these two met in the headliner. The fight was extremely close and watching it back, I had it 2-2 going into the fifth round. The judges had it 2-2, 3-1 Usman, 3-1 Covington.

The fifth round was going to decide the winner and Usman got the TKO to retain his welterweight title. Even if that stoppage doesn’t happen and Covington survives, Usman would have won a split decision at UFC 245.

I’m expecting the rematch to be just as competitive. Colby Covington and Gilbert Burns are really the only welterweights that I see giving Usman trouble. I don’t want to include Leon Edwards yet until I see him a bit more active. That said, the rematch between these two is going to be something to behold whenever the UFC gets it finalized.

UFC: Conor McGregor eyes 2021 lightweight run before going after the welterweight title

Conor McGregor, UFC

The biggest star in the UFC wants to become a champ-champ again. However, this time, Conor McGregor (22-5) is eyeing the lightweight title and the welterweight strap. The Notorious one wants to be the first man with a title in three weight divisions.

At least, that’s what the former two-division champion posted on Twitter. McGregor was very active on social media during UFC 261. This past Saturday we saw Kamaru Usman (19-1) knock Jorge Masvidal (35-15) out to retain the welterweight title.

After the fight was over, McGregor unveiled his plans for 2021 and 2022. We all know that the next step for McGregor is the trilogy with Dustin Poirier (27-6, 1 NC). The two men are headlining UFC 264 in Las Vegas in July.

Whoever wins that matchup will likely be the next in line for the lightweight title. At UFC 262, Michael Chandler (22-5) and Charles Oliveira (30-8) are fighting for the vacant lightweight title.

If McGregor is able to defeat Poirier in July, it will likely setup his lightweight title fight for the end of the year. That is a big if, but McGregor is certainly capable of winning. If he does capture the title, it’s off to the UFC‘s welterweight division for McGregor.

UFC future for McGregor

Conor McGregor is no stranger to making bold claims that make most people roll their eyes. When he first came into the UFC, he vowed that he would become the featherweight and lightweight champion.

While most thought he would never capture even the featherweight title, McGregor did what he said and became a two-division champion. After that, he turned his attention to Floyd Mayweather. Again, most rolled their eyes at the thought of McGregor securing a boxing match with Floyd.

Yet, McGregor did just that. Back in January, McGregor suffered his first knockout loss in the UFC at the hands of Dustin Poirier. McGregor is very confident he will win the third fight between the two men.

While the odds at UFC 264 should favor Poirier, McGregor has always proved he can beat the odds. I actually like McGregor’s odds against Chandler and Oliveira more than Poirier so him capturing the lightweight title is extremely possible should he win in July.

However, the 170 talk is where I take a step back. Conor McGregor is great for the UFC and business. However, I really think he should strongly consider staying at 155 pounds if he was to ever win the title again.

Kamaru Usman is a massive welterweight and with his improved striking, I don’t know how McGregor can defeat him. There are certainly welterweight matchups where McGregor could succeed, however, Kamaru Usman is not one of them.

At the end of the day, McGregor always aims for the highest of highs and you have to admire that. Whether his UFC claims are crazy or not, he’s always proven in the past that you should never doubt him. July is a massive test, but if he can win, the sky is truly the limit again for McGregor.

After getting knocked out at UFC 261, what’s next for Jorge Masvidal?

This past Saturday at UFC 261, we got to see the rematch between Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal (35-15) and Kamaru Usman (19-1). The two men ran things back after Usman won a decision last July at UFC 251.

Because the first fight was on short notice, there were a lot of questions around whether Usman could beat Gamebred when Masvidal had a full camp. Saturday night, we got the answer to those questions.

Going into UFC 261, the thought was that if the fight was on the feet, Masvidal would have a massive advantage. Masvidal has some of if not the best boxing in the UFC‘s welterweight division.

Usman of course is known for his grappling and his pressure. However, in recent fights, we’ve seen Kamaru Usman drastically improve his striking under new head coach Trevor Wittman.

At UFC 261, Usman was always one step ahead of Masvidal even on the feet. His straight shots were always landing first all night. Gamebred really couldn’t get anything going offensively outside of some decent leg kicks.

Just over a minute into the first round, Usman unleashed a right straight that sent sweat flying and Masvidal to the canvas. The UFC‘s BMF was knocked out cold in a manner that shocked everyone watching.

What’s next after UFC 261?

Make no mistake about it, Masvidal’s reputation and star power took a major hit on Saturday night. Obviously, Masvidal has lost a lot in his career and this won’t be the end, but it definitely takes a ton of steam off of him in getting knocked out like that.

In hindsight, Masvidal should have taken the UFC’s offer to coach TUF against Colby Covington. Even if Masvidal lost to Covington, he wouldn’t have lost in the fashion that he did on Saturday night.

Nevertheless, Masvidal got another UFC title shot and you can’t blame him for going after that. So the question becomes, what’s next for Masvidal? Well, I think for that we look at UFC 262.

In a few weeks, Nate Diaz (20-12) and Leon Edwards (18-3, 1 NC) are co-headlining the card. I think you pair Masvidal with one of those two. If Edwards wins, I can’t see him taking the Masvidal fight now. He’ll likely wait for the winner of Usman/Covington.

So, I think the UFC should pair Masvidal with Nate Diaz whether he wins or loses or pair him with Edwards if he loses. Both of those fights would sell well considering the history that Gamebred has with both men.

While his star power took a hit, I don’t think this is the end for Masvidal. He is still definitely a draw and with the right pairing, I think the UFC will do very well the next time Masvidal is on the marquee.

UFC: Dana White meeting with Nick Diaz about his return

One of the most popular and polarizing figures in the UFC is gearing up for his return. Dana White said tonight that he is planning on meeting with Nick Diaz (26-9, 2 NC) tonight about his return to the octagon. Diaz posted a cryptic message on Twitter earlier today hinting at a return.

We have not seen Nick Diaz inside the UFC since 2015. In that fight, Diaz lost a decision to Anderson Silva. However, the fight was later turned to a No Contest after Silva failed his drug test. Nick Diaz has only fought twice since 2013.

Even with the inactivity from competition, Diaz has never stopped training. He is extremely active on social media and is always posting training footage. Even with that, we haven’t seen him back in the UFC since the Silva fight. Diaz’s management said that he wanted to return this year.

However, we haven’t seen any serious momentum until now. White said at the UFC 261 post-fight press conference that Diaz wants to fight and he’s asking for a fight. When someone like Nick Diaz says he wants to fight, he’s likely going to get a fight.

Who will the UFC pair him with?

It will be extremely interesting to see how the UFC decides to play this. If they are wanting to ease Diaz back into competition, I think a great fight would be with Robbie Lawler (28-15, 1 NC). Lawler is just 1-5 in his last six, but he’s still extremely popular.

These two fought way back at UFC 47 and Diaz won by knockout. The rematch of these two legends would be a ton of fun for fans. Another possibility could be against Jorge Masvidal (35-15). Masvidal just suffered a brutal knockout loss at UFC 261 at the hands of Kamaru Usman. 

Gamebred has history with the Diaz brothers and he was actually close to fighting Nick Diaz at one point. However, the fight fell through and Masvidal went on to fight Nate Diaz later on. After Masvidal’s loss, perhaps the UFC decides to have the two men fight. Would be a great opportunity for both.

There are a number of other fun options out there for Nick Diaz and the UFC. I’m just excited to hear that he’s going to be returning. This will definitely be a story to follow over the coming weeks.

Kamaru Usman knocks Jorge Masvidal out cold at UFC 261

In the main event of UFC 261, we saw the rematch the world has been waiting for. The welterweight champion of the world Kamaru Usman (18-1) took on Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal (35-14). These two men first met last year at UFC 251.

That night Kamaru Usman walked away with a decision victory. However, the circumstances surrounding the matchup have created doubt in who is truly the better man. When 2020 started, the UFC was trying to book the welterweight title fight between Usman and Masvidal.

However, after contract negotiations went south with Masvidal, the UFC shifted to Gilbert Burns. A week before the fight, Burns tested positive for COVID and the UFC went back to Masvidal. The fight was on six days notice which has created a lot of doubt around the outcome of the first fight.

Could Kamaru Usman beat Gamebred when Masvidal has a full camp? These doubts and questions are why the UFC champion called Masvidal out after his last fight. Despite winning the first fight, Usman wasn’t happy with the decision. With that, tonight’s rematch came into focus.

UFC 261 Recap

Round 1

The UFC 261 main event started unsurprisingly with no touch of the gloves. Masvidal moves forward with pressure and takes the center of the cage. Usman looks to land his jab early. A couple of low kicks land for Jorge Masvidal. Masvidal very light on his feet early.

Usman pushes forward and lands a very solid right straight. Masvidal smiles but that was a big shot from the UFC champion. Solid body shot lands for Usman. Body kick and a left hook lands for Masvidal. Another big shot lands for Masvidal, but Usman lands a big takedown.

Halfway through the round and Usman goes to work inside Gamebred’s guard. Masvidal looking to land elbows from his back, but the pressure is heavy from Usman. Big elbow lands for Kamaru Usman. Masvidal lands some back elbows and uses the fence to stand up.

Masvidal is able to separate with one minute left. A huge right hand and power jab land for the UFC champion. Two huge leg kicks land for Masvidal. Masvidal blitzes and lands a couple of good shots. The round comes to a close and it’s 1-0 Usman at UFC 261.

Round 2

The second round begins and Masvidal goes back to the leg kicks. The UFC champion appears to be trying to time a big shot early in the second. Another good kick for Masvidal connects. Masvidal swings wild and Usman counters with a massive right hand. Another huge right hand lands for Usman and Gamebred is out cold. Case closed, Kamaru Usman is the best in the world.

Kamaru Usman def. Jorge Masvidal by KO – Round 2