Leon Edwards and Jorge Masvidal are two of the top contenders in the UFC welterweight division. As luck would have it, they also happen to be two of the most heated rivals in the division.
As of yet, however, the pair have not yet had the opportunity to settle their differences in the cage.
Speaking to MMA Junkie recently, Leon Edwards claimed that he wants the fight, and that the UFC matchmakers share that sentiment, but that Masvidal turned the bout offer down.
“The only fight that makes sense now is me and Masvidal, and that’s the fight that I want,” Edwards said. “I spoke to the UFC. They want the fight. I want the fight. But Masvidal is turning the fight down. They say he doesn’t want the fight, so I don’t know. I’m just here. I’ll be ready to go at the end of the year and hopefully get one of those fights.
“They’re saying Masvidal said no, he doesn’t want the fight. He’s trying to outbid himself, saying he wants a stupid amount of money to fight. So I’m ready to go. I’m just waiting to see what happens, and so I’m looking forward to it. Hopefully we get the fight done.”
Jorge Masvidal, of course, has made it clear that, after knocking out Ben Askren in a record-breaking 5 seconds at UFC 239, he’s only interested in fighting Conor McGregor in a lucrative money fight or Kamaru Usman in a welterweight title fight.
Leon Edwards — like UFC President Dana White — doesn’t believe that Masvidal is in a position to make these kinds of demands.
“I just don’t see where he gets the nerve to be demanding, making demands on what he wants,” he said. “He’s 2-2 in his last four fights and I’m 8-0 in my last eight fights, second most to the champion. So I feel I should be ahead of him, anyway, in the title-shot contention. But I’m still willing to put my 8-0 up against his 2-2 to prove who’s the No. 1.”
While Edwards doesn’t feel that Masvidal is in a position to make ultimatums, he seems to have one himself. He says that, after his recent victory over Rafael dos Anjos, he’ll only accept fights with Masvidal or Usman.
“My two choices are either Kamaru – the rematch – or Masvidal,” Edwards said. “That’s the only two fights right now in my career that make sense. I’m on a eight-fight win streak. I’ve done more work than anybody in the division, so I feel like I deserve one of those two fights. Whoever comes first, I’m ready to go.
“I’m willing to take Masvidal just to shut him up and get on the way to the title. Just stop running and take the fight and let’s prove to the fans you are what you say you are. I’m ready to go in November, so let me know.”
While Leon Edwards and Jorge Masvidal are both hoping to fight Usman for gold in the near future, the next title shot is seemingly going to Colby Covington. So they may have to fight each other in the meantime one way or the other.
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 8/7/2019.