Leon Edwards had to wait years for his shot at the welterweight title. After capitalizing on his shot against Kamaru Usman at UFC 278, he’s looking to cash in on his new championship status.
In a new interview with Mirror Sports, ‘Rocky’ made it clear that he expected the UFC to renegotiate his contract before he’d face ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ in a highly anticipated rematch.
“I need a new one now, 100 percent,” Edwards said. When asked if talks were in motion he replied “Not yet because as far as dates and fights, that normally happens when you talk about fights because you use the fight to negotiate the contract. When it’s time to start talking about the fight and the date of the fight, we’ll start negotiating a new deal and go from there.”
Is Leon Edwards just looking to sort out the details that come with being a champion, like a percentage of pay-per-view sales? Or is he hoping to see an extra zero added onto his base pay? He could run into some resistance with UFC brass depending on how much money he’s looking to tack onto his deal.
Edwards vs. Usman 3 in Wembley, England anyone? #UFC278
— Combat Sports UK (@CombatSportsUK) August 21, 2022
That’s not to say he doesn’t deserve a lot more cash. His rematch against Usman in the UK is looking like it’ll be a big money event. The UFC is already looking at holding it at the 90,000 person Wembley Stadium. It’s an event that could blow MMA in the UK up even bigger than it is now, and it’s already on fire.
“I think mixed martial arts has grown so much in the UK, and it’s been waiting for a show like that to happen in Europe,” Edwards told Mirror Sports. “Now you’ve got a world champion from the UK I think it’s the perfect time, especially with all the other [British] fighters doing well in the sport I think now is the time to do it, to keep growing MMA in this part of the world.”
Edwards won the welterweight title off Usman with a last minute headkick KO in a fight he was losing. Despite that, he’s confident that he’ll be able to beat ‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ in a rematch. We’ll have to wait until sometime around March 2023 to see … or possibly later if Leon pushes too hard for more money.
What do you think of Leon Edwards’ contract demands, PENN Nation? Too early, or is it past due that ‘Rocky’ cash in after years of being overlooked? Let us know what you think in the comments!