Fresh off a win in his most recent fight, Yves Edwards is looking forward to his upcoming fight against Joe Stevenson in the UFC. Edwards is set to face Stevenson at UFC 61 on July 8th.
On the subject of the Stevenson fight, Edwards told MMAWeekly, “Tough fight. Tough guy. I think this will be a good one. I think he will definitely try to take this to the ground, and I’ll keep it standing. He’s a really strong guy, but there is more to this than just strength.”
In his last UFC appearance this past March, Edwards lost in an upset to Canadian fighter Mark Hominick, who submitted Edwards with a triangle choke. One month later, Edwards got back on the winning track with a unanimous decision victory over Seichi Ikemoto at Pride Bushido 10.
Prior to his loss to Hominick in March, Edwards had not fought in the UFC since 2004, which was before the UFC’s huge growth in pay-per-view sales. To some newer fans of the sport, the loss to Hominick at UFC 58 might be the only time they’ve ever seen Yves Edwards fight.
Edwards is keenly aware of this fact, and is eager to pick up a victory this time. “It’s good to be back, and I really want to show those that only know me from UFC 58 that that wasn’t really me,” Edwards said.
After winning the welterweight competition on The Ultimate Fighter 2 and then losing to Josh Neer in April, Joe Stevenson is moving back to lightweight to take this fight against Edwards. A lot of fighters have been making the move from welterweight to the suddenly crowded lightweight division, including Stevenson and former UFC Welterweight Title challenger Sean Sherk.
When asked specifically about Sherk and his move down in weight to the 155-pound division, Edwards jokingly said in the voice of the announcer from The Price is Right, “Sean Sherk, come on down!” Edwards continued, “I’ve always thought that Sherk would eventually move to 155 pounds. He was a monster at 170 pounds, and I think he will have a lot of success at lightweight. I like Sherk, though, so I want to him to win every fight he has… except the one he’s going to have with me.”
If he can get past Joe Stevenson, Edwards could end up being the fighter who goes up against Sherk for the vacant UFC Lightweight Title. That spot was originally offered to BJ Penn, but Penn turned it down because he reportedly feels that he should get a shot at the UFC Welterweight Title against the winner of the upcoming fight between Matt Hughes and Georges St. Pierre.
At this point, the two leading candidates to face Sherk for the vacant Lightweight Title are the winner of the Yves Edwards vs. Joe Stevenson fight, and the winner of the Sam Stout vs. Kenny Florian fight.