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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Danny Segura

Colby Covington predicts Leon Edwards will be ‘a way easier fight’ than prime Kamaru Usman

Ahead of possibly his last attempt at UFC gold, Colby Covington believes the third time is the charm.

The soon-to-be three-time UFC title challenger headlines the final pay-per-view of the year as he challenges welterweight champion Leon Edwards at UFC 296. Covington (17-3 MMA, 12-3 UFC), a couple of months from turning 36, could potentially be fighting for his last opportunity at an undisputed belt.

Covington failed in his previous two attempts, losing both times to Kamaru Usman. Despite coming up short before, Covington likes his chances, as he thinks that Edwards (21-3 MMA, 13-2 UFC) is a much easier matchup than Usman.

“No, no. This is a way easier fight than Usman,” Covington told Full Send Podcast. “When I fought Usman, he was at his peak, at his prime. I mean, at that time, he was the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter on earth and I thought I beat him. A lot of the fans thought I won the fight.

“This is a lot easier fight. Usman was a lot more well-rounded than Leon. Leon is kind of one-dimensional. He just likes to set up his leg kicks and side kicks, and that’s it.”

Usman of course saw his reign come to an end by losing twice to Edwards. He was knocked out in their first outing in 2022 and then he failed to recapture his title in the rematch, losing a decision to Edwards in March.

Although Usman lost to Edwards twice, Covington believes at his best he’s a tougher test than Edwards.

“Yeah, (Edwards) is in his prime, but prime Leon is not the same as prime Usman, and prime Leon doesn’t have enough,” Covington said. “It doesn’t matter what he’s done, how much takedown defense he’s practiced. He’s not going to be able to stop what I do to him.”

Covington didn’t give a specific prediction for this fight, but he’s confident he’s going to make the champion quit within their scheduled 25 minutes of fighting.

“My prediction is: I’m going to bring out the dog in me, and I’m going to bring out the quit in Leon. He’s a quitter. He’s shown those quitter signs.”

For more on the card, visit MMA Junkie’s event hub for UFC 296.

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