Leon Edwards-Jorge Masvidal Grudge Match Booked for UFC 269

By Tristen Critchfield Oct 11, 2021

Leon Edwards and Jorge Masvidal will get a chance to settle a feud that began more than two years ago when they square off at UFC 269.

The pairing was initially reported by Ariel Helwani and later confirmed by promotion broadcast partner ESPN. Both fighters have verbally agreed to the bout, but contracts have not yet been signed. Edwards vs. Masvidal will be a three-round affair.

Edwards and Masvidal famously crossed paths at UFC Fight Night 147 in London on March 16, 2019. Masvidal defeated Darren Till via second-round KO and Edwards took a split verdict over Gunnar Nelson at the event, but it was what happened backstage that really made headlines. Masvidal was giving an interview when he began exchanging words with Edwards, who was nearby. “Gamebred” then left the interview set to confront the Englishman, and shortly thereafter the fighters engaged in a brief altercation before being separated. That incident led to Masvidal’s famous “three-piece with a soda” line, but the two haven’t yet crossed paths since that incident.

"Despite earning the next title shot, [Edwards] has always been willing to fight Jorge first, provided the terms were correct," Edwards' manager, Tim Simpson, told ESPN. "We are very happy with the deal, and excited to compete in December, and then for a world title thereafter.”

The 30-year-old Edwards is unbeaten in his last 10 promotional appearances, with a no contest against Belal Muhammad the only blemish on his ledger during that time. Most recently, the Team Renegade representative took a five-round decision over Nate Diaz at UFC 263. He also owns notable victories against the likes of Rafael dos Anjos, Donald Cerrone and Vicente Luque.

Masvidal, meanwhile, is coming off back-to-back losses to Kamaru Usman in welterweight championship bouts. “Gamebred” initially stepped in on short notice to face Usman at UFC 251, where he dropped a unanimous decision in July 2020. Because of those circumstances, Masvidal was granted a rematch at UFC 261, and he fell again to the champion — this time by second-round KO. Prior to that, Masvidal authored a banner 2019 campaign that included finishes of Diaz, Ben Askren and Till.

UFC 269 takes place on Dec. 12 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and is topped by a lightweight title tilt between Charles Oliveira and Dustin Poirier.

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