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Edwards: Covington being rewarded for not fighting, won't get title shot

Jeff Bottari / UFC / Getty

UFC welterweight champion Leon Edwards said he has no plans to fight Colby Covington next despite president Dana White naming the American as the next contender for the welterweight belt.

"I definitely have a say, and he ain't getting the title shot next fight," Edwards said Monday on "The MMA Hour."

Edwards argued that Covington, who last fought in March 2022, was "getting rewarded for not taking the fights."

"When it was me, I got removed from the rankings," he said. "So this Dana White privilege is definitely real."

Edwards defeated Kamaru Usman in an anticipated title rematch by majority decision Saturday. Covington, who served as the backup fighter for the bout, previously lost twice to Usman.

"There's no way you're getting beat twice by the guy I just beat twice - went out there and beat (Jorge) Masvidal - and then sit out for a year and a half," Edwards said. "Not even tweeting or nothing, just go missing for a year. … It makes no sense at all."

He added, "He has to go out there and earn his way like I did."

Edwards has held the welterweight title since defeating Usman by KO at UFC 278 in August 2022.

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