Leon Edwards is looking to put Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone out to pasture when they meet on Saturday in Singapore.
For the past year, Edwards has been asking the UFC to finally give him a top 15 opponent and when they came calling with an offer to face Cerrone, he couldn’t say yes fast enough.
Edwards looks at Cerrone as a legend and a big name in the sport, but he truly believes the former lightweight title contender has already seen his best days inside the Octagon and their fight will prove it.
“He was on a three fight losing streak until he beat his last opponent. I feel he’s past his sell by date,” Edwards told MMAWeekly when talking about Cerrone. “He’s done everything he needs to do in this sport. I know he’s a tough veteran. I know he can show up sometimes. I feel I’m way better than him everywhere the fight takes place. That’s all it is. I’m going to go out there and prove I’m the better fighter and he’s not on my level.”
Now those are strong words from Edwards when it comes to a fighter like Cerrone, who is currently tied for the most wins in UFC history while maintaining one of the most active scheduled for any fighter on the entire roster.
Cerrone has earned his respect through blood, sweat and tears shed in the Octagon for many years and there aren’t many fighters who have engaged in a battle with him that leave the without some bumps, bruises and often times a few extra scars.
Edwards says that he absolutely respects what Cerrone has done throughout his career but he just feels that he’s overmatched and out gunned in this particular fight.
“He’s a huge name. He’s a veteran of the sport. He’s been around for some time now. He was in the UFC when I first started my pro career,” Edwards said about Cerrone. “He’s a big name. To get an opportunity to face him in Singapore is an honor for me but I’m going to put that aside.
“I’m going out there to take his head off. I’m happy he stepped up to the plate and I’m happy he gave me the opportunity but I’m going out there to take his head off.”
For all the ways he believes he can best Cerrone in the fight, Edwards knows that his size and power are going to be a big problem for the former lightweight.
Cerrone felt the brunt of what it was like facing a bigger, stronger welterweight two fights ago when he suffered a first round loss to Darren Till in Poland.
Edwards expects to dish out more of the same when he lets Cerrone taste his power on Saturday in Singapore.
“I’ve not met a welterweight yet that can out power me. For a guy that’s coming up from lightweight to welterweight, I can’t see where he’ll have an advantage,” Edwards said. “I have the size over him, the reach over him, the power over him. I feel after this fight, I’ll put on a performance and he’ll be forced to go back down to lightweight and compete against them guys.”
Between his size and power advantage as well as youth being on his side, Edwards feels like this fight is a passing of the torch in some ways as he plans to continue working his way through the top 10 while he plans on sending Cerrone packing after he’s done with him.
“He’s been in many wars in his career. He’s been stopped many times,” Edwards said. “I feel he’s past his prime and I don’t feel there’s nothing he can do now that’s going to change nothing. I feel 100-percent he’s past his prime.”