Kamaru Usman responds to Leon Edwards: ‘I nearly feel esteem he’s forgetting what came about’

Kamaru Usman is delighted to give Leon Edwards credit rating for the head kick heard around the area, which delivered England handiest its 2d-ever UFC championship. But when he hears the extra or less boasts coming from his rival ahead of their UFC 286 trilogy match, esteem Edwards vowing to “open the door” for Usman’s retirement, he can’t motivate nonetheless surprise if “Rocky” is overlooking the realities of how those diverse 39 in-cage minutes went that the 2 shared.

“Oh, he’s going to open a door for me, because I’m the king. He’s going to open the door for me to stroll thru and I’m going to reveal him, ‘Alright, you are going to additionally come in now,’” Usman acknowledged at UFC 286 media day. “No, the silly thing about that’s, I nearly feel esteem he’s forgetting what came about [for] 24 minutes in the last combat. Don’t you guys feel that?

“Yeah, no doubt, it modified into an excellent technique and you landed it, which I am keen on. I’m esteem, ‘Rattling, that modified into magnificent.’ Give him props for it. But you’re forgetting what came about. What did you demonstrate in those two fights that leads you to mediate you are a greater blended martial arts than me? I am on my manner out. I don’t wish to bag punched in the face without end. That’s very, very sincere. I’m now not seeking to back out this for every other 10 years, fully now not. In that sense, yeah, I am on my manner out. But I’ll hotfoot away after I’m licensed, smartly, and willing. Except then, esteem The Wolf of Wall Facet road, you realize what he acknowledged — I’m now not going nowhere.”

Usman, 35, seeks to recapture the UFC welterweight title on Saturday when he faces Edwards in a rubber match in basically the main match of UFC 286, which takes build of dwelling at London’s O2 Arena. The 2 opponents contain fought twice ahead of, with Usman a hit a unanimous resolution in December 2015 after they had been every up-and-comers, followed by Edwards pulling off surely one of basically the most surprising comebacks in MMA history in August 2022 with a fifth-spherical head kick knockout at UFC 278 that ended Usman’s four-three hundred and sixty five days reign atop the division.

No topic his most smartly-liked loss, Usman remains a heavy making a bet current to reclaim his belt at UFC 286. And when requested for the immense adjustments he’s made to counter the concern Edwards gifts, Usman alluded to an feeble maxim of now not fixing what isn’t broken.

“Had I licensed kept my damn fingers up, are we having this dialog? We’re now not,” Usman acknowledged. “So I accumulate it’s a topic of licensed correcting those tiny mistakes.

“I indicate, I fought Colby Covington and I fought Leon Edwards. You guys all watched the fights. I fought Colby twice and I fought Leon twice. You guys all watched the fights. Who carry out you have confidence you studied is greater? So, Leon’s anxious, I give him that. And he modified into ready to land that resplendent kick, I’ll give him that. But there’s nothing that — as mighty as he’s constructing himself up with the contemporary self assurance or whatnot, on the finish of the day it’s licensed going to be you and me locked in there. And also you and I truly had been locked in there for 2 diverse fights now, and what contain you shown me or shown your self to mediate that you are the greater fighter?”

Usman admitted that he fell into a chunk of of complacency against the latter stages of his undefeated 15-0 originate to his UFC profession, which is the 2d-easiest mark in company history.

But now that he’s lend a hand in the challenger’s seat, he vowed to contain a renewed sense of motivation that he’s handiest felt about a instances in his profession — all of which ended in explosive outcomes.

“I felt violent going into three fights,” Usman acknowledged. “I felt violent going into the Sergio Moraes combat because I kept asking for high-15 [opponent] and I felt disrespected that the UFC matchmakers kept giving me guys that weren’t in the tip 15. I felt very, very violent and resentful, and I mandatory to illustrate that — and we saw what came about.

“I fought Colby Covington the principle time, we all know how that originate-up modified into, what he acknowledged, what he’d done all around the area. I felt very violent and I mandatory to bag violent. Me and Colby, we’re basically among the finest wrestlers arguably in the corporate, and we didn’t battle at all, because I felt esteem I mandatory to bag violent — and we saw how that combat went.

“And I fought Jorge Masvidal the 2d time, with all that came about, you guys are failing to be conscious, we every flew throughout the area and I modified into the handiest one who had expert for an fully diverse man.[[Gilbert Burns]caught COVID, and I don’t even wish to reveal the total accidents that I modified into going thru ahead of that combat. … Didn’t sleep at all, and I fought in the morning, and I dominated him. And then after that combat, that’s whereas you’ve obtained the total excuses. ‘Oh, it’d be diverse whereas you give me a corpulent camp, and this and that.’ And it upset me to where, I felt violent in that 2d combat — and we all saw what came about. And now not to level out it modified into an enemy territory in Jacksonville. I modified into booed, didn’t change anything else.

“And in this combat, I’m initiating to bag that feeling. Some fights, you are desirous to settle on to be natty and bag out of there and now not feel anything else. This combat, I wish to feel all of it.”

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