Another massive UFC title fight is on the horizon on March 18th at UFC 286 when welterweight champion Leon Edwards and former champion Kamaru Usman converge in London, England at O2 Arena for their trilogy fight. Usman won their first battle way back in 2015, but Edwards was able to punch back last year when he slept Usman with a nasty head kick in the final round of their championship bout. Despite his status as the current champ, most UFC betting sites and betting apps have Edwards as a pretty massive underdog on the moneyline.
Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman UFC Welterweight Championship Odds
- Leon Edwards knocked Kamaru Usman out in the final round of their last bout
- Usman’s loss to Edwards was his first defeat since 2013 in a pro MMA bout
- This will be the third fight between the pair, with Usman and Edwards winning one apiece
Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman Odds
It’s not often that you see a current champion going into a fight as an underdog as big as Edwards, but considering the way their last fight was going for most of the five rounds, it’s not really surprising to see betting sites go heavy on Usman here. UFC odds below are provided by Bet99 sportsbook.
Win via Decision
Win via KO/TKO/DQ
Win via Submission
Leon Edwards Odds
Some may say that Edwards’ shocking head kick KO finish of Usman at UFC 278 was nothing but luck, and they are partially right, but the left jab feint followed by the left head kick is something he and his team have worked on before. Edwards actually used the exact same move in a 2015 UD win over Pawel Pawlak, though in that instance the kick only dropped Pawlak instead of knocking him out cold, the way it did for Usman.
Edwards is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt and became the first man to ever take Usman down in the UFC octagon in that last fight, and he’s also got good defensive skills in the clinch. “Rocky” also has a really solid jab and should be able to trade with Usman on the feet.
What the Englishman doesn’t want to happen in front of his fellow countrymen and women in London on March 18th is to be taken down over and over again like he was at UFC 278. Usman dominated him with ground control time and was all set to win that fight easily before the head kick heard round the world gave Edwards one of the most unexpected wins in MMA history. Edwards will need to keep Usman from getting top position and feed off the energy of his home crowd if he wants a chance in this one.
Kamaru Usman Odds
This fight is a chance at sweet redemption for the man they call the “Nigerian Nightmare.” Usman dominated Edwards in their first fight in 2015 with his persistent and overpowering wrestling, and he was doing the same in the rematch last year before he got a little lazy and dipped his head into Edwards’ patented head kick.
Usman has continued to improve with every passing fight, and you can be sure that he’s not going to make the same mistake, so expect Usman to keep his guard high and use caution when going into range with Edwards. While Usman wasn’t much of a boxer early on in his career, he has really improved that part of his game recently, which should allow him to find an edge over Edwards on the feet as well.
Both fighters have had as many decision wins as wins by finish in their career, which is why oddsmakers are handicapping this as a fight that’s more likely to go the distance than not. With Usman’s superior strength and skill set and the added motivation of revenge after his humiliating loss last time, he should be able to win his belt back. However, as we saw last time these two scrapped, anything can happen in the UFC octagon.
Justin Gaethje vs. Rafael Fiziev Odds
In the co-main event for this stacked card we will also be treated to an explosive lightweight matchup between No. 3 contender and former interim lightweight champ Justin Gaethje and No. 6 contender Rafael Fiziev. Since his big TKO win over Tony Ferguson to win the interim belt back in 2020, Gaethje has struggled, as he was embarrassed by champs Khabib Murmagomedov and Charles Oliveira in recent submission losses.
Fiziev, however, is on the rise, having won six straight fights dating back to 2019, including straight knockouts in three of his last four bouts, one of which came against Rafael dos Anjos. Both Gaethje and Fiziev are brawlers, so viewers should not miss this bout, because there are undoubtedly going to be fireworks. Recent form and results for both fighters are likely big factors in the higher-ranked Gaethje coming in as a big underdog.
Alex is a recent graduate of Ryerson's Sport Media program in 2019 and has been contributing to BettingTop10 since 2020. He has worked in the field of sports and sports betting for several years, including stops writing for theScore and daily fantasy sports website FantasyPros as one of the lead NBA news writers. A dedicated sports fan and experienced sports bettor, Alex has the knowledge to provide you with the best betting advice and the sneakiest props no matter what the sport may be.
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