Congratulations to the UK’s Leon Edwards for becoming the new UFC Middleweight Champion of the world with his stunning head kick victory over Kamaru Usman. After a great first round Edwards was clearly losing on points having been dominated by the champion in each round since, but in the fifth and final he pulled off a near perfect head kick as you’re ever going to see, sending Usman crashing to the canvas and making him the new champion.
As the photos show, he set it up with a left that tells Usman to dip his head to the right, but that kick is already coming and it’s all over.
One thought on “The head kick from hell! Leon Edwards UFC 278”
Wow, yeah, it’s a brilliantly executed, classic combination that lures Usman’s defenses out of position. The various angle video clips are educational.
Edwards draws out two errors from Usman and capitalizes on them. First, Edwards’ left jab gets Usman’s right hand committed to his centerline. Usman sees the knee coming in for a kick to his torso but only has time to react to brace himself. To defend, he rotates his torso toward the kick, which helps bring his left hand in to block. He also drops his right elbow to guard his ribs, but the torso rotation causes his committed right wrist to cross his centerline, taking it out of play as a high right block.
Second, with Usman guarding his torso, Edwards rotates his hip and re-targets high. There is a video clip with the camera behind Usman that shows Edwards rotate his hip. It’s a thing of beauty. In world of kicks, this kind of kick is probably not the most powerful, but it was fast and certainly enough to get the job done.
Of course, this is all done in the blink of an eye, the result of years of practice. Detail is only available for us “spectators” with frame-by-frame replay. It does illustrate the importance of the basic rules and practice that drills those basics into your being. It also makes me want to go practice kicks and kick defenses.
Thanks for sharing.