Former UFC title challenger Chael Sonnen has shared some advice for perennial welterweight contenders Leon Edwards and Neil Magny.
During a recent episode of “Ariel and The Bad Guy”, Chael Sonnen and Ariel Helwani discussed what, if anything, is next for ‘Rocky’.
“What do we make of poor Leon Edwards? Like at this point is he ever going to fight? Like is he just never going to fight, is that it?” Helwani questioned. “Are we just moving on without this guy?”
Chael Sonnen responded:
“Ariel I feel as though you ask me that question a lot and I never take the time to answer because I feel like it is tongue and cheek and poor Leon if anyone deserves something good to happen it is him. So I feel like we find a way of getting his name out there but the third time is the charm partner. You’ve asked me this three times now and I am finally going to answer it. Leon Edwards does everything right except make himself interesting. There’s another guy in the same weight class that does the same thing,” Sonnen explained. “His name is Neil Magny. The only time in a matchmakers meeting that these guys names are even brought up is when Sean Shelby is flipping through the contracts and says ‘oh we owe this guy a fight, who should we put him with?’. Well let’s put him with somebody really hard, because they’re a really hard guy and only a really hard guy is going to do that fight. So it appears that both of these gentlemen (Magny and Edwards) do a good job of listening to their coaches. They appear to have the skills and the X’s and O’s of the unified rules down pat. It also appears that there is nobody at a seat at that table that’s got their hand on the pot someway or some level of percentage, that has any type of creative control.”
Chael Sonnen continued to address why the UFC welterweight standouts in Leon Edwards and Neil Magny are not receiving any love from the promotion.
“You want to have a title fight or a big fight, the first thing you have to be is interesting! Both of those guys are great fighters, but they don’t bring any interest to the table. Leon Edwards coming out and calling for a fight that anybody that has the sense knows he isn’t going to get, not only wastes a media opportunity, but it makes him look like he doesn’t have power in this sport. The worst thing you can be in this sport is powerless. The absolute worse thing you can do is call for a shot, in front of Sports Center, and not get it. How do you not have all those deals done behind the scenes before you come up with the idea to take credit for it being your idea. Both of those guys are missing. I don’t blame either of those guys. But somebody is at the table somewhere that doesn’t have any creative control. ‘Well you know I think Robbie Lawler he likes to get inside Neil so you’ve got the long arms and you need to keep him at bay’. We’ve got enough of those guys!” Chael Sonnen yelled. “Who sits down at the Neil Magny table and comes up with something interesting? The same person that sits at the Leon Edwards table and does it Ariel. This guy (hand gesturing a zero), nobody!”
Sonnen finished by giving props to both Edwards and Magny:
“Those guys know how to fight man. Those guys are awesome. Those guys are skilled. I think they are getting better. By the way, I don’t see a ceiling for either one of them. Are they both going to go on to become world champions? Maybe. Are you aware the Neil Magny just won his seventeenth career UFC fight at welterweight. Are you aware that the only person to ever win more fights at welterweight is the greatest of all time in the letters of GSP. That is how good this guy is. He just doesn’t ever think that maybe instead of doing this jab with a kick behind it, maybe I should be… Interesting!”
What do you think of Chael Sonnen’s advice for UFC welterweight contenders Neil Magny and Leon Edwards? Share your thoughts in the comments section PENN Nation!
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on September 5, 2020