UFC News: Top Welterweight backs Colby Covington to beat Robbie Lawler at UFC Newark
What's the story?
#4 ranked Welterweight Leon Edwards was on MMAFighting's EuroBash podcast where he spoke about the clash between Covington and Lawler and how it would impact his future.
Edwards backed Covington to go over Lawler as that would enable UFC to book him against his arch-rival, Jorge Masvidal.
In case you didn't know...
Mutual respect is necessary for MMA, but if there is one fighter who Leon Edwards would legitimately want to kill inside the Octagon, that man would be Jorge 'Gamebred' Masvidal.
Edwards was infamously involved in a backstage skirmish with Masvidal after UFC Fight Night 147. Masvidal punched Edwards in the face which led to a laceration under Edwards' left eye.
'Rocky' has been wanting to get his hands on Masvidal ever since; however, at the same time, the British fighter is also focused on getting a title shot against Kumaru Usman.
The heart of the matter
While Edwards does want a crack at Usman's Welterweight strap, he is well aware that Covington would be given first preference if he wins his fight against Lawler.
Edward would have no problems with that happening, as he could then get a chance to gain some retribution against Masvidal.
“It’s definitely better for me if Colby wins because they’ll probably give the title shot to him. Masvidal will have nowhere to run then, he’ll have to fight me for the number one contender spot and we can go from there."
But I also want to fight Usman. I wouldn’t want that to happen, Colby beating Usman, because then that fight would be gone for me. I want to get all of those fights in; I don’t want any of them to get away from me. I want that weasel [Masvidal] and I want that rematch with Usman.”
Edwards clarified that his sole purpose in MMA is to be world champion and that he is ready to beat both Usman and Masvidal if given the opportunity.
“My focus is to be a world champion. My focus isn’t on Masvidal, it’s to be a world champion. If I could get a title shot before I fought Masvidal that would be perfect. I’ll beat Usman and then I’ll beat Masvidal. If they’re not giving me that and they want to give me Masvidal first instead, that’s another perfect situation. That would open me up to an even bigger audience, I’d get to school the weasel and then get my title shot against Usman. Either or, I do not give a s**t. I’m ready to go, I’m one of the best fighters in the world and proved it time and time again.” H/t: MMAFighting
Edwards is coming off a big victory against Rafael dos Anjos at UFC on ESPN 4 and is currently without a confirmed opponent. Masvidal is at the peak of his powers after notching up the fastest knockout in UFC history against Ben Askren. Masvidal and Edwards are #3 and #4 respectively in the UFC Rankings, and a grudge match between the two seems like a no-brainer.
However, the outcome of Colby Covington vs. Robbie Lawler will have a major influence on future bookings.