Leon Edwards walked away from his UFC 263 bout against Nate Diaz with a win. Despite a dominant performance by Edwards, many fans were preoccupied with the one moment where it looked like Edwards was in trouble of being knocked out. Diaz rocked Edwards for just a moment but didn’t follow through to finish the deed. In a recent interview on the “Fighting with Teddy Atlas” podcast, Edwards explained what went through in mind at that moment.
“When he [Nate Diaz] first tagged me with the shot, I felt the first shot but after that, it’s kind of a flash, I kinda got back to my wits and obviously, he was charging forward, trying to finish the fight. I was in and out dodging the punches. All I was thinking was ‘Just don’t shoot’ you know, because once you shoot, he is gonna start wrapping your neck up, looking to choke you,” Edwards explained (via Sportskeeda.com.)
“Like he did to Conor [McGregor]…the same thing, he tagged him, Conor shot for the takedown and ended up getting choked out. So that’s what was going through my head. Just don’t shoot, just stay composed, don’t try to fight back while you are hurt, move, get your head back onto you. Once I was back, I knew I had it, you know…I think I showed my experience, I showed that I can still take a shot and still have a clear mindset ahead of me.”
Edwards survived the flurry and won the fight, but that one moment certainly raised Diaz’s stock. Recently, Diaz has been calling for a bout with champion Kamaru Usman and getting some traction. Meanwhile, Edwards is stalled. He walked away as the victor but is in no better position than when we went into UFC 263.
Usman doesn’t seem interested, and Jorge Masvidal turned away as well. Edwards is undefeated in 10 bouts and has one of the longest winning streaks in the UFC. For these reasons, many people believes the Englishman is deserving of a title shot immediately.
What were you thinking when Nate Diaz rocked Leon Edwards at UFC 263?