The trilogy finally has a date. Welterweight champion Leon Edwards will look to make the first defense of the crown against the man he won it off of in Kamaru Usman. The pair are set to headline UFC 286 in London on March 18, UFC president Dana White said on Saturday night.
Expectations were that Edwards and Usman would headline UFC 286 after Edwards’ hometown of London was announced as the event’s location. Usman’s lingering hand injury cast doubt around the expected trilogy fight. White confirmed that Edwards vs. Usman 3 would headline the O2 during Saturday’s UFC Fight Night post-fight press conference. The UFC boss also announced Justin Gaethje vs. Rafael Fiziev for the co-main event.
Usman was closing the gap between him and Georges St-Pierre in the welterweight G.O.A.T. conversation before running into Edwards’ shin at UFC 279 in August 2022. Usman was up three rounds to one and cruising to a decision win when Edwards uncorked a hellacious head kick that knocked out Usman in the final minute of the fight. The shocking upset victory was voted. The two had first fought early in their career with Usman picking up a competitive decision win.
UFC 286 also features Marvin Vettori vs. Roman Dolidze, Nathaniel Wood vs. Leon Murphy, Jennifer Maia vs. Casey O’Neil and Daniel Rodriguez vs. Gunnar Nelson on the card.