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MMA

Leon Edwards' coach gave an Oscar-worthy speech before the final round, it was Rocky Balboa-esque

Jayden Collins

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Leon Edwards' coach gave an Oscar-worthy speech before the final round, it was Rocky Balboa-esque

Leon Edwards justified his ‘Rocky’ nickname with a dramatic last-ditch knockout which helped him clinch UFC gold.

Kamaru Usman and fans alike still haven’t had an opportunity to stop their heads from spinning after Edwards’ devastating head-kick in the dying embers of the fight.

It was the sort of moment that could’ve been written into a Rocky Balboa screenplay.


It looked as if everyone - including Edwards himself - had ruled him out of the contest, with pound-for-pound king Usman leading the judges’ scorecards convincingly three rounds to one.

However, one man that didn’t lose hope was Edwards’ trainer Dave Lovell, who gave his fighter a speech worthy of an Oscar.

After the fourth round, the British fighter returned to the corner looking dejected and defeated.

But his coach wasn't going to let Edwards throw away an opportunity like this and made a desperate attempt to knock some sense into him. 

Lovell yelled at his fighter: “You got to stop feeling sorry for your f**king self. 

“Come on then, what’s wrong with you?!”

Adding: “Come on Leon, you got this man.”

Cue ‘Eye of the Tiger’ playing in Edwards’ head.

Clearly, the speech did wonders and got Edwards in the zone.

However, the advice didn’t seem to kick in until the final minute of the final round.

The British-Jamaican fighter looked like a broken man, and it was being called out by the UFC commentators in the midst of the fight.

Analyst Din Thomas said on-air: “If it wasn’t obvious enough, Leon is broken now.

“And the biggest tell that you can always know this is because he doesn’t give his coach eye contact in the corner. When you don’t give him eye contact, you’re ashamed. And he’s embarrassed right now of his own performance.”

But his coaching team hadn’t given up on him just yet, and just like his speech before the final round, it was another brilliant bit of coaching that secured Leon the win.

In a video captured by former double-champ Henry Cejudo just moments before the shocking kick, a voice from Edwards’ corner can be heard yelling instructions from the corner.

He yells: “Head kick, Leon!”

And boom, seconds later Usman was dazed on the floor and Edwards was the new UFC welterweight champ.

Leon gave thanks to his coaches after the fight, saying: “My coaches spurred me on, just kept reminding me that ‘You’re still in the fight, you’re the best,’ and ‘Fight to the end,’ and that combination, I was drilling with my coaches, with Henry [Hooft] and our coaches, that cross-head kick. And it landed perfectly.”

Leon’s coaches most definitely gave Mickey Goldmill a run for his money on this occasion.  

Featured Image Credit: @MirceaMMA/Twitter. ESPN.

Topics: Kamaru Usman, Leon Edwards, MMA, UFC, Australia

Jayden Collins
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