Leon Edwards vs Kamaru Usman 3 confirmed as London's UFC 286 main event

Leon Edwards will defend his UFC welterweight title against Kamaru Usman at UFC 286 in London later this year, the promotion confirmed this week.

Published: 16 January 2023 - 1.36pm

Leon Edwards and Kamaru Usman will headline UFC 286 at the O2 Arena in London.

The fight, confirmed by Dana White at his press conference on Saturday, will be the third between the two welterweights.

They first fought in 2015 at UFC on Fox in Florida, before a rematch at UFC 278 last year.

Usman was victorious in the first and Edwards in the second, so all eyes will be on the bout that will decide the superior fighter over the trilogy.

Edwards has won 10 of his last 11 fights, with the other finishing as a no contest against Belal Muhammad.

Usman, meanwhile, has a career record of 20-2 and his defeat to Edwards in the summer ended a run of 15 straight wins.

“I just want to see how he reacts to getting knocked out cold, and see how he reacts travelling to the UK, seeing how crazy the fans are and just see how he comes back because he’s not getting any younger,” Edwards said. 

“He’s, what, 35, 36? Maybe older? Let’s see how he comes back.

“It’ll be a totally different fight—I’ve said it, my coaches have said it. I’ve never lost in the U.K., amateur or pro, so I’m excited. 

“I love fighting in front of my friends and my family. If he thinks he’s going in there and it’s going to be the same fight, he’s in for a rude awakening.”

Usman had been seen with a bandaged wrist before White’s announcement, leading to speculation that a potential injury would end hopes of a third fight.

But the 35-year-old Nigerian is now set for his first fight since August.

Former interim champion Justin Gaethje will also take on Rafael Fiziev at UFC 286 with a potential shot at the lightweight title held by Islam Makhachev on the line.

UFC 286 fight card (more TBC)

Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman

Rafael Fiziev vs. Justin Gaethje

Roman Dolidze vs. Marvin Vettori

Gunnar Nelson vs. Daniel Rodriguez

Lerone Murphy vs. Nathaniel Wood

Luana Carolina vs. Joanne Wood

Malcolm Gordon vs. Jake Hadley

Jennifer Maia vs. Casey O’Neill

Jai Herbert vs. Ludovit Klein

Veronica Macedo vs. Juliana Miller