As per Ariel Helwani (MMA Journalist), Leon Edwards wanted to eliminate ring rust by fighting in the Octagon with a different opponent. He was originally scheduled to fight Khamzat Chimaev back in December 19 but pulled out due to testing positive for COVID.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) January 4, 2021
The fight was rescheduled for January 20, 2021 at UFC Fight Night 185. Unfortunately, the fight is cancelled once more due to this time Khamzat recovering from COVID. The main-event was scrapped, but Leon Edwards was still ready to whomever the UFC offers.
Sadly for Leon Edwards, the UFC denied his offer and is planning to rebook the fight instead. It seems that the UFC is really pushing a non-ranked fighter against a Number 4 Welterweight even if it means rebooking it for the third time.
The case is unfortunate for Edwards since he has not fought since 20 July 2019. No other fighter has had unfortunate case career-wise than Leon Edwards during the pandemic. He was scheduled to fight Tyron Woodley but was cancelled due to the closing of the borders. The fight would have potentially granted him a title shot if he won.
After waiting for the pandemic to ease down, the UFC offered him to fight a lower ranked fighter, with which he denied since he feels that he is on a winning streak and deserves fights that could grant him a title shot. UFC removed his from the rankings, but eventually accepted to fight Khamzat Chimaev, suddenly his name appeared in the rankings.
It will be interesting on when the UFC will rebook the fight. Obviously the fans want to see the fight, it will attract high viewers but the fact of the matter still stays that Leon Edwards will have a ring rust even longer. He still wanted to fight but UFC denied his offer.