UFC 286 recap: Leon Edwards beats Kamaru Usman, defends UFC welterweight title
Leon Edwards successfully defended his UFC welterweight title against Kamaru Usman in his homecoming fight at UFC 286.
Edwards eked out a majority decision victory over Usman in their trilogy bout.
As for the co-main event, Justin Gaethje beat Rafael Fisiev in a back-and-forth war as they delivered a 'Fight of the Year' contender.
A full recap of UFC 286 can be seen below.
Featured Image Credit: UFC
Topics: UFC, Leon Edwards, Kamaru Usman, Justin Gaethje
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Leon Edwards called out by UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev Read Post
Leon Edwards defends UFC welterweight title against Kamaru Usman Read Post
Justin Gaethje edges out Rafael Fiziev in absolute war Read Post
Vintage Gunnar Nelson taps out Bryan Barberena with stunning arm-bar, he made it look effortless Read Post
Marvin Vettori scores controversial victory over Roman Dolidze, fans don't agree with the decision Read Post
Jack Shore submits Makwan Amirkhani to win UFC featherweight debut Read Post
Muhammad Mokaev submits Jafel Filho after surviving nasty knee bar Read Post
Lerone Murphy, Jake Hadley and Joanne Wood pick up big wins in the early prelims Read Post
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UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev wasted no time in calling out Leon Edwards, issuing a challenge on Twitter following UFC 286.
Leon Edwards defended his UFC welterweight title against Kamaru Usman in his homecoming bout.
He earned a majority decision following five grueling rounds.
Who's next for 'Rocky'? Well, it could be UFC lightweight king Makhachev as he called him out on social media.
Edwards vs. Makhachev? Watch this space.
Leon Edwards successfully defended his UFC welterweight title, beating Kamaru Usman for a second time in a razor-close decision.
Edwards narrowly out-pointed Usman to retain his UFC welterweight championship, taking a majority decision following five brutal rounds.
The Brit started aggressive in the opening round, landing body shots, with the raucous O2 Arena crowd getting behind the home fighter with 'headshot, dead' chants.
Edwards and Usman continued to exchange strikes in the second round, with Usman mixing up his attack with takedowns. Edwards even attempted his own takedowns, having had success in their second fight last August.
In the third round, Edwards was deducted a point for a blatant fence grab following Usman's attempted takedown.
The challenger found success on the feet, popping his jab. The champions returned fire with a series of low kicks.
The championship rounds played out with both fighters exchanging strikes on feet as Usman continued to pursue for takedowns.
Following five rounds, Edwards got the judges' nod via a majority decision to defend his UFC welterweight title.
KING LEON RETAINS THE CROWN! 👑— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 19, 2023
🇬🇧🇯🇲🏆 @Leon_EdwardsMMA HAS DONE IT IN LONDON! #UFC286 pic.twitter.com/GsanSRKCuI
Justin Gaethje narrowly edged out Rafael Fiziev in an absolute war as both men traded serious leather.
Gaethje vs. Fiziev lived up to its billing as they delivered a 'Fight of the Night' worthy showdown.
In the opening round, Fiziev tagged Gaethje, who landed his own shots, finding success in low leg-kicks.
Fiziev continued to apply pressure, with Gaethje rallying to secure a decision victory. He produced a brilliant third round, bloodying up his opponent with devastating uppercuts.
WHAT A DAMN FIGHT! 🔥— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 18, 2023
🇺🇸 @Justin_Gaethje with another highlight for the ages, THIS GUY, MAN.
🖥️ Watch #UFC286 LIVE NOW on @BTSport Box Office! pic.twitter.com/kqjG4EZ9V6
UFC stars online loved the UFC 286 co-main event.
UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev tweeted: "Nonstop action."
Michael Chandler, who fought Gaethje, wrote: "Gaethje v Fiziev delivering thus far…just like we all knew it would!"
Francis Ngannou said: "What a War!! Congrats to both fighters but Geathje is a beast!"
Kevin Holland added: "They be throwing some heat!"
Speaking after his victory, the American slugger told Daniel Cormier: "I'm taking one more run at the title, but I won't be around that much longer."
Enjoy 'The Highlight' while he's around.
Gunnar Nelson produced a virtuoso performance as he submitted Bryan Barberena in the first round.
Nelson toyed with Barberena before securing a takedown. From there, he transitioned beautifully into an arm-bar, forcing the tap with just nine seconds left on the clock.
The Icelandic fighter is now on a two-fight winning streak, having beaten Takashi Sato in his last outing.
GUNNI TAKES THE ARM!— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 18, 2023
🇮🇸 @GunniNelson gets the submission finish in the first, come on! pic.twitter.com/6doCz8FwKJ
Jennifer Maia stunned Casey O'Neil as she handed the Australian-based Scot the first defeat of her professional career.
In a bout mainly contested on the feet, Maia took home the unanimous decision victory as she makes it back-to-back wins in the UFC.
As mentioned, it's O'Neil's first defeat of her career, having won nine fights in a row until UFC 286.
Marvin Vettori scored a controversial victory over Roman Dolidze as he earned a unanimous decision victory by the judges.
Vettori and Dolidze fought over 15 grueling minutes, with the Italian returning to the win column following his defeat to Robert Whittaker. The defeat snaps Dolidze's four-fight winning streak.
But fight fans online didn't agree with the decision.
One Twitter user wrote: "One judge gave 30-27 ?!?! Fire him!"
A second tweeted: "How was that a unanimous decision. Should’ve been Dolidze’s W."
A third added: "Huge huge robbery."
A fourth said: "Dolidze won that for me."
The celebrities are out in full force for UFC 286.
Hollywood A-listers Jason Statham, Miles Teller and Daniel Kaluuya, not to mention Nottingham Forest keeper Keylor Navas as well as snooker legend Ronnie O'Sullivan are among the stars in attendance at the O2 Arena.
The stars are in attendance! 🌟#UFC286 | BT Sport Box Office ▶️ https://t.co/jCoe5rr83f pic.twitter.com/kiqlmguIW6— UFC on BT Sport (@btsportufc) March 18, 2023
Jack Shore brilliantly bounced back from his defeat to Ricky Simon by beating Makwan Amirkhani.
Shore, who was undefeated prior to his bout against Simon, made his featherweight debut at UFC 286.
And he made a victorious start to his 145lbs venture as he stopped the veteran Finland fighter.
The Welshman forced his opponent to tap after performing a tidy a rear-naked choke in the second round.
BULLSEYE FOR JACK SHORE! 🎯— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 18, 2023
🏴 @JackShoreMMA announces himself at 145lbs with a BIG win! #UFC286 pic.twitter.com/6yESOdKXiM
Kamaru Usman is also in the building.
'The Nigerian Nightmare' arrived in style ahead of looking to become a two-weight UFC welterweight champion.
Kamaru Usman arrives to #UFC286 in style 🔥 pic.twitter.com/ZiFzMk76uQ— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) March 18, 2023
Will he reclaim the 170lbs title? Stay tuned to find out.
Scotland's own Chris Duncan earns a hard-fought win over Omar Morales.
Not quite the fireworks we expected, but, nonetheless, an entertaining affair between Duncan and Morales.
They traded on the feet, with Duncan opting to grapple Morales in the third round.
Duncan, who fought on Dana White's Contender Series, was awarded a split-decision victory.
Leon Edwards is in the building.
The UFC welterweight king has just arrived at the O2 Arena ahead of making the first defence of his crown.
Huge cheers for the home fighter as the big screen shows him walking to his dressing room.
Relive the moment he became UFC champion below:
Yanal Ashmoz introduced himself to the UFC by destroying Sam Patterson.
The Israeli fighter needed just one minute and 15 seconds to dispatch the British fighter.
THE LEFT FLOORED HIM. 😱— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 18, 2023
💢 Yanal Ashmoz spoils the debut and stays undefeated! #UFC286 pic.twitter.com/AsHkmKfddX
Muhammad Mokaev scored a big submission victory over Jafel Filho to register his fourth win of his UFC career.
The televised portion of UFC 286 began with Mokaev, who stopped Filho to improve his professional record to 10-0 (1).
HIS LEG'S NOT SUPPOSED TO BEND LIKE THAT! 😷 #UFC286 pic.twitter.com/m1Vue0GpHT— UFC Europe (@UFCEurope) March 18, 2023
The Manchester-based fighter out-struck the Brazilian on his feet, dominated the ground exchanges and fended off a nasty-looking kneebar in the second round, before sinking in a slick rear-naked choke.
A host of Brits picked up wins in the early prelims of UFC 286, including Lerone Murphy.
Murphy continued his unbeaten streak in the Octagon, beating Gabriel Santos to record his fourth UFC win.
Elsewhere on the early prelims, Christian Leroy Duncan secured a win on his UFC debut.
Jack Hadley earned a big victory over Malcom Gordon, securing the stoppage in just over a minute.
Joanne Wood returned to the win column with a split-decision over Luana Carolina.
Jai Herbert drew against Ludovit Klein while Veronica Hardy beat Juliana Miller.
Hello and welcome to our coverage of tonight's UFC 286 LIVE from the O2 Arena.
A trilogy bout between Leon Edwards and Kamaru Usman headlines a blockbuster card from London, England.
Justin Gaethje and Rafael Fiziev go to battle in the co-main event, while the likes of Gunnar Nelson, Marvin Vettori and Jack Shore are also in action.
Stick with us as we bring you coverage of UFC 286.
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