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By NAN Sports Editor

News Americas, NEW YORK, NY, Mon. Aug. 22, 2022: Caribbean immigrant Leon “Rocky” Edwards has made history.

Jamaican born Edwards shocked the MMA world Saturday night when he beat Kamaru Usman of Nigeria in the UFC 278 main event to win the welterweight belt in Salt Lake City, Utah and become a UFC champ.

With a head kick in the final round of a fight he was losing handily, Edwards knocked out Usman to win at the Vivint Arena. The finish came at 4 minutes, 4 seconds of the fifth round, making it the fourth-latest finish in a UFC title fight.

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Edwards snapped Usman’s 15-fight UFC winning streak, which was one off Anderson Silva’s UFC record. It was one of the most stunning knockouts in the history of the sport. Usman was considered the pound-for-pound best fighter in the world.

Edwards is also the second England-based athlete to do so. An emotional Edwards, speaking with commentator Joe Rogan immediately after the fight, declared: “I was born in Jamaica with nothing. I lived in a wooden shed with a zinc roof. Look at me now!”

Edwards, who celebrates his 31st birthday on August 25th, was born in Kingston and lived with his parents and his brother in a one-room house. Growing up, he was surrounded by crime, and his father was involved in what the fighter has described as “questionable activities.”

He moved to the Aston area of Birmingham, England at age nine, and his father was shot and killed in a nightclub in London when Edwards was thirteen.

After the tragedy, he would become involved in criminal activity such as drug dealing, street fighting, and knife possession along with his social circle, but was able to get out of the lifestyle at age 17 when his mother got him to join a mixed martial arts (MMA) club.

More than a decade later, on Saturday night (August 20), Edwards started well in the long-awaited title fight at UFC 278 in Salt Lake City, but Usman dominated the middle three rounds to put himself on course for a decision victory.

Out of nowhere, Edwards feinted a jab before slamming a kick into the side of Usman’s head, flooring one of the most dominant champions the UFC has ever had and surprising everyone in the Vivint Arena.

In winning Edwards has also become only the second British fighter to win a UFC title.

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