Leon Edwards Wants The Winner Of Strickland Vs. Du Plessis, McGregor’s Return

November 15, 2023
8 months
Image of Leon Edwards

In today’s top MMA news, Leon Edwards, the UFC welterweight champion, is targeting the winner of Sean Strickland vs. Dricus du Plessis.

Edwards will be making a defense of his title when he faces Colby Covington at UFC 296 on December 17th, 2023, after having retained the title with a win over Kamaru Usman at UFC 286.

But provided that he overcomes Covington, the focus appears to be on moving up to middleweight. The current middleweight champion, Strickland, secured a major upset over Israel Adesanya to win the belt via a unanimous decision.

In the aftermath, the UFC ordered the champion to defend the belt against the number-one-ranked contender in the form of Du Plessis. With that being said, Edwards hoped to face the winner at UFC 300. 

Edwards’ Comemnts

“Any of them two would be great to fight. I’m big myself so, I feel like that would be perfect. Going out there and becoming double champ, the first ever from the U.K. anyway. To do it, that’s definitely one of my goals. It’s in the cards for sure. Next April would be perfect, to be honest. The division right now there’s nobody that’s exciting. To go out there and do that, that would be perfect. UFC 300, UFC 300, putting me on that card would be massive. Let’s see,” Edwards

Elsewhere, Conor McGregor will not be back in time to make his return at UFC 300. That is according to his coach, John Kavanagh. MMA fans were expecting McGregor’s return to be soon after the Irishman confirmed his USADA enrolment.

Thereafter, the fighter is expected to provide two negative samples over a six-month period before he can compete. The timeline would have been around April, just when UFC 300 is expected to take place.

The two-division champion has not been in action since his loss and injury to Dustin Poirier, as he was vocal about being deprived of his livelihood. While McGregor has returned to training, the wait for his return will continue. 

Kavanagh’s Comments

“We were hoping for April, that was the hope and that was what we were told. Then, now it seems to be the summertime. This coming April [was the goal]. You probably saw the same soundbite that I did, I don’t know [what’s holding it up], and we had a little back and forth earlier today. So, are they holding him back for fight week? So International Fight Week? I don’t really know… Yeah, okay. It’s a knockback from April to July, but it’s not the end of the world,” Kavanagh

Those comments are consistent with what Dana White had said recently after he confirmed that a fight with Michael Chandler could take place in the summer.

That would give the UFC ample time to build up McGregor’s return for an action-packed summer, as questions remain over whether McGregor will look the same. But based on White’s comments, the MMA fighter is ready to go. 

“Talked to him yesterday, too. He’s good. He’s ready. He wants the [fight]. He’s gotta sit out the six months to get back into their drug testing pool. Realistically, we could be looking at him next summer,” White said

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