Belal Muhammad delivered a dominant grappling performance on his way to a decision victory over Stephen Thompson at UFC Vegas 45 last weekend. Riding a six-fight winning streak, Muhammad now believes he deserves a title shot ahead of Leon Edwards.
According to Belal Muhammad, he should be above 'Rocky' in the queue by virtue of being way more active in recent years. The No.5-ranked welterweight also feels he has taken on higher levels of competition compared to Edwards. 'Remember the Name' recently told Damon Martin of MMA Fighting:
"I literally fought eight times while Leon's fought three times in the last two or three years. I'm the one pushing, I'm the one being active. Dana White says he likes active fighters, he doesn't like these people waiting. So if I go out there, I get a big win, I think I earned definitely a skip in front of him.
"I feel like I've earned a skip in front of him already based off of the level of opponent I fought. I fought [Demian] Maia and 'Wonderboy' (Stephen Thompson) back to back. And he's fought, who did he beat... [Rafael] dos Anjos and Nate Diaz, who are both 55ers. So it's like, if you really think, he hasn't fought any ranked 170 pounders that are actually ranked and good right now."
Watch Belal Muhammad's interview with MMA Fighting below:
When Belal Muhammad faced Leon Edwards
Leon Edwards returned to the octagon after a hiatus of nearly two years to face Belal Muhammad in the main event at UFC Vegas 21. However, Edwards' return certainly did not go the way he would have wanted it to.
Leon Edwards accidentally poked Belal Muhammad in the eye early in round two. Muhammad instantly dropped to the ground as his eye started to bleed. After consultation with the ringside doctor, referee Herb Dean called off the bout at 00:18 of the second frame. The fight was ruled a no contest.
Despite being on a 10-fight unbeaten streak, Edwards has only fought twice over the past two years. While his fight against Muhammad ended in a no contest, the Englishman earned a unanimous decision win over Nate Diaz in his most recent outing.