Belal Muhammad is so hellbent on locking up a rematch with current UFC welterweight champion Leon Edwards that he’s willing to channel his inner Tommy Gunn and fight “Rocky” in the streets.
Muhammad, who is coming off a statement TKO win over Sean Brady at UFC 280 this past October, is on the short list of deserving title contenders for Edwards’ first official defense. The promotion may want to consider other names like Khamzat Chimaev, Colby Covington, Jorge Masvidal, and Kamaru Usman (when healthy), but Muhammad remains in the mix heading into 2023.
The 34-year-old contender fought Edwards back in 2021 only to get poked in the eye and see that matchup ruled a no contest. Since then, Muhammad has won four-straight and is eager to show that he’s the best welterweight fighter in the world today. “Remember the Name” is willing to fight Edwards on the streets of London to prove it.
“The only thing that really makes sense now is me against Leon for the title,” Muhammad told The Schmo in a recent interview. “Otherwise, you can put me and Chimaev on the same card in London, and I’ll fight him at 179.8 or whatever he came at [at the UFC 279 weigh-ins]. We can do that for a number one contender fight.” (h/t MMA News).
He continued, “I’mma be there [in London for UFC 286]. Wherever the title is, that’s where I want to be… I want to be on that card. If anything happens, I can step in, or if me and Leon see each other in the street, we can show out there, too.”
It’s unknown at this time what UFC is looking to do with Edwards for his first title defense. If Usman is in fact injured and unable to compete in early 2023 then the promotion could finally give Chimaev his first shot at gold. However, UFC may be reluctant to grant the undefeated Khamzat a title shot coming off an egregious weight miss his last time out.
If that’s the case, Muhammad or Covington would be the most logical choices. We shall see.