In the lead-up to their welterweight title fight at UFC 296, Leon Edwards shared his thoughts on his opponent, Colby Covington, stating that he’s not as good as people think. Edwards, the defending champion, expressed his thoughts that Covington poses as a washed-up version of Kamaru Usman but emphasized that there are better ways to beat him.
The champion stated that Covington has vulnerabilities that could be exploited, having been stopped by TKO, choked out, and taken down in previous fights. He said: “He’s not as good as everyone thinks. He’s a guy that’s been stopped before by TKO, been choked out before, been taken down before, so there’s many ways that you can beat him.”
Edwards, who defends his title for the second time, mentioned that he and his team have developed a solid game plan to neutralize Covington’s strengths and aim to secure a victory. He acknowledged Covington’s scrappiness but is confident in his ability to outperform him in their upcoming bout.
Regarding the selection of Covington as his next challenger, Edwards expressed uncertainty about the choice but emphasized that he’s focused on getting through Covington to maintain his position in the competitive welterweight division. He acknowledged the scrutiny Covington has faced due to his extended layoff and suggested that winning the title might lead Covington to retire or move down a weight class: “After I beat him, I truly believe he’s either going to retire or move down, probably. He keeps calling out Islam, so let him go fight Islam at lightweight.”
When asked to comment on the nasty things Covington had said about him earlier, Edwards brushed it off. Covington had earlier said that he would defeat Edwards and former US president Donald Trump will be the one to wear him the belt crowning him as the new champion of the welterweight division.
Edwards stated that he does not understand Covington’s obsession with Trump. He found the whole scenario weird and questioned Covington’s choice to be a character based on Trump. Edwards expressed confusion about Covington’s custom suit featuring Trump’s mugshot and suggested that Trump won’t be wrapping anything around Covington’s waist because he would not be getting the belt.