UFC welterweight champ Leon Edwards eyes move to 185 in pursuit of two-division glory by the ‘end of next year’

UFC welterweight champ Leon Edwards eyes move to 185 in pursuit of Two-Division glory by the 'End of next Year'

Leon Edwards plans on adding more UFC gold to his collection.

After landing “the kick heard ’round the world” at UFC 278, ‘Rocky’ has successfully defended his welterweight world title twice, securing unanimous decision wins against former champion Kamaru Usman and three-time title challenger Colby Covington. On Saturday, July 27, he’ll step inside the Octagon for defense number three when he meets the division’s No. 1 ranked contender, Belal Muhammad, at UFC 304 in Manchester.

Leon Edwards vs. Belal

Though Edwards is not the kind of fighter to look past any of his opponents — even as a 2-to-1 favorite — that doesn’t mean the UK fan favorite isn’t already making some big plans for his future.

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During a recent interview with Sky Sports, ‘Rocky’ revealed plans to move up to middleweight in hopes of obtaining the ever-elusive champ-champ status.

“My excitement is me getting another belt,” Edwards said. “My plan was to go next year. Defend my belt twice this year, that will be four defenses. Maybe one more [defense] next year, that’s five defenses. Then later on in the year, have a big middleweight fight. That’s six title fights… That is my goal. Two [defenses] this year, one next year, then end of next year move up.”

Leon Edwards will likely have to go through Islam Makhachev before making the move to 185

Chances are to achieve that status, he’ll have to go through another fighter with two-division glory on his mind.

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After finishing Dustin Poirier in the UFC 302 headliner on June 1, reigning lightweight titleholder Islam Makhachev called for a champion vs. champion clash between himself and Leon Edwards. As of now, ‘Rocky’ believes that both of them have plenty big enough backlog to keep them busy in their own divisions for the time being. Though, he can’t deny it would be a “massive fight” for both men.

Makhachev vs. Poirier

With Edwards already scheduled to give ‘Remember The Name’ his long-awaited title opportunity, Makhachev will likely move on to a rematch with his division’s No. 1 contender, Arman Tsarukyan, with October in Abu Dhabi or November in New York hosting.

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Tsarukyan