UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman will face Leon Edwards in his latest title defense targeted for March or April, per Ariel Helwani.

Helwani announced the most recent episode of The MMA Hour.

According to Helwani, the two sides are in the beginning stages of negotiations for a fight tentatively slated for either the March or April UFC pay-per-view. Usman defeated Edwards earlier in their careers in 2015 by a unanimous decision.

Usman most recently defeated Colby Covington in a title rematch two years in the making, as he earned a decision victory in another tough bout against his rival. Edwards is coming off of his fight against Nate Diaz at UFC 263 and was supposed to face Jorge Masvidal at UFC 269.

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Masvidal, one of Usman’s other rivals, pulled out of the bout due to an injury. Edwards opted not to stay on the card and instead wait for a rematch against Usman.

Kamaru Usman has won 19 straight fights in his career

Since his loss to Usman, Edwards has won nine straight bouts and has emerged as the top contender in the welterweight division. He was originally supposed to face a final test against Masvidal but will now focus on negotiations for making a rematch with Usman happen.

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Usman is undefeated in his UFC career and his lone defeat in his professional career came against Jose Caceres at a CFA event in 2013. He’s won 19 straight bouts in a row and is risen the all-time ranks as arguably the greatest welterweight in UFC history.

Usman has developed his striking and added a more well-rounded skillset since he fought Edwards the first time. Edwards, mostly known for his kickboxing and technical striking overall, could still give Usman a tough test.

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The welterweight division is in desperate need of contenders, and Edwards sounds like he’ll finally get his coveted title shot against Usman.

What is your way-too-early prediction for Kamaru Usman vs. Leon Edwards 2?

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Curtis Calhoun is a Combat Sports Contributor based in Seattle, Washington. After a longtime dream of becoming a sports journalist, he was able to accomplish his goals upon graduating from Washington State University in 2016.