UFC welterweight contender Leon Edwards thinks the promotion is trying to hold him back after continuing to pass on him for a title shot.
Edwards spoke with Ariel Helwani on the latest edition of The MMA Hour to give his thoughts on the UFC's decision to give Colby Covington a rematch with current UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman at UFC 268 on November 6, instead of rewarding his current nine-fight winning streak. He said the following about the Usman-Covington rematch and believes no matter how much the organization tries to prevent it from happening, that he will one day be the 170-pound king of the Octagon.
“It’s been six years since my last loss,” Edwards said (h/t MMA Fighting). “Colby got beat by the champion, fought Woodley, the fight ended by injury, sat out for over a year and got a title shot. But when I go on and get 10 fights in a row, now, ‘He needs one more.’ Every time, it’s one more. I think they’re trying to get me beat, but I cannot lose. I truly believe that I will be the next world champion. They’re trying to hold me back from it, but it’s coming. I truly believe it.”
He continued on to say the only fight that he will take instead of waiting for a title shot is a bout with former two-time UFC title challenger Jorge Masvidal but doesn't think the BMF champion will accept the matchup or take it before the end of the year.
“I thought Masvidal was an option, but [his camp is] saying next year, and I’m not waiting until next year,” Edwards said. “If I’m waiting until next year, I might as well be fighting for the world title. Why would I wait for a man I’ve called out for three years, turned me down for three years – now he’s coming off two back-to-back losses, got knocked out in his last fight, to say yeah, I’ll fight you next year, when I could wait for the title shot? I know he won’t take it. He talks all this sh*t on social media and plays this tough guy on social media, but we all know he’s not going to take it. He’s coming off back-to-back losses, he’s trying to get another win to get his name back where he was. But I truly believe he won’t take it. He chose to fight Ben Askren over me. That proves enough he’s not willing to fight me.”