Taking main event honors in the organization’s return to London this weekend, undisputed welterweight champion, Leon Edwards fights on homesoil for the first time in four years – attempting to clinch the trilogy and retain his title against former champion, Kamaru Usman, atop a UFC 286 pay-per-view card.

Edwards, the current undisputed welterweight champion, managed to land himself the division throne back in August of last year in Salt Lake City, Utah – rallying with a fifth round high kick KO to defeat Usman and topple the Nigerian from his perch atop the pound-for-pound rankings.

The loss came as Usman’s first during his gold-laden Octagon tenure, having previously beaten Edwards back in 2015 – and racking up title defenses against Jorge Masvidal, Gilbert Burns, and rival, Colby Covington.

Attempting to take out Usman for the second time in as many fights this Saturday evening in London, England – Edwards tops a massive pay-per-view card in the capital, hosted at The O2 Arena. 

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And despite emerging from the Vivint Arena as the unlikely champion in the tailend of last summer, Edwards, who was conceivably losing each round ahead of his Hail Mary fifth round finish over Usman, is hotly closing as a betting underdog to leave home soil with his championship in tow. On outright winner, Edwards is placed as short as a +110 underdog to defeat Usman over at BetWay

Despite dropping his undisputed crown in stunning fashion last August, a combination of a dominant showing prior to his KO loss, paired with his prior 2015 unanimous decision win over Edwards in Orlando, Florida mate Usman a betting favorite to reclaim his crown.

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Edging past Colby Covington prior to his loss to Edwards last year, Usman had stopped Jorge Masvidal with a brutal knockout, after stopping former teammate, Gilbert Burns. In the early stages of his title reign, Usman would retain his title in other wins over both Masvidal and Covington – having clinched the crown initially from Tyron Woodley

And according to BetWay, the Auchi native – under the tutelage of Trevor Wittman at ONX Labs, appears to be landing decent money on a drawn out win over Edwards on Saturday in London, with the ex-champion currently placed at -115 to take a decision win over the champion and force the judges into action at The O2 Arena. 

Heralded for his spectacular fifth round high kick KO win over Usman back in August, Edwards has been placed as quite the underdog to repeat that feat and finish Usman with strikes, with BetWay offering the Birmingham native at +500 to stop Usman via KO, TKO, or win via disqualification. 

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En route to his championship victory, Edwards, a staple of Team Renagade BJJ & MMA – toppled the likes of Nate Diaz, Vicente Luque, Bryan Barberena, Donald Cerrone, Gunnar Nelson, and former undisputed lightweight champion, Rafael dos Anjos. 

An interesting prop wager ahead of Saturday night sees BetWay offer odds on the bout coming to a close in the opening minute – rather than the final 60 seconds this time around, with Usman still a favorite as short as -400 to dispatch Edwards within the opening minute in London Town. 

Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.