The reigning UFC welterweight champion appeared on The DC Check-in with Daniel Cormier to talk about his upcoming title bout at UFC 268. Asked why he thinks Edwards was repeatedly snubbed for a title fight, Usman said the matchmakers and himself weren't impressed with the Englishman's most recent performance. According to Kamaru Usman:
"That was an audition... You audition for me, then I decide if it's you or that guy. Myself and the promotion we'll sit down and we'll say, 'I like this audition tape. Let's go ahead and pick him next.' And he went out there and he was auditioning and for a while he did okay. But then, all of a sudden, the 25th minute, you sh*t the bed. You can't do that."
Edwards snatched his ninth straight victory against Nate Diaz in his last outing. However, 'Rocky' almost got finished in the dying seconds of the fifth round when Diaz rocked him with a straight left.
'The Nigerian Nightmare' also believes Edwards just isn't marketable enough to be given the opportunity. He said:
"Someone has to keep it real with this guy. At the end of the day we know – let's be honest here – we know this is a business. This is a partnership between us and the promotion. In a partnership, you got to give them something to work with. You gotta give them something to sell. And they have thrown you bone after bone after bone. Let's just be honest, based on that last performance, you can't go out there and do that with Nate Diaz. You can't do that!"
Check out Kamaru Usman's interview with Daniel Cormier below:
Kamaru Usman and Leon Edwards will be in action this year
Kamaru Usman beat Leon Edwards in 2015, and 'Rocky' has been trying to get that back ever since. However, a rematch between the two will have to wait as they both have tough assignments ahead.
Usman will defend his UFC welterweight crown against Colby Covington in the main event of UFC 268 on November 6 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. It will be a rematch of their UFC 245 title bout, which saw Kamaru Usman retain the title.
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Meanwhile, Edwards is en route to a collision course with rival Jorge Masvidal at UFC 269 in December. It will be a grudge match that stems from a backstage altercation they had in 2019.