Te Edwards is slated to return to the Octagon following his UFC debut loss to Don Madge in October. He’ll look to pick up his first UFC win against a man who has nine of them: Dennis Bermudez.
While Edwards is looking to rebound from a tough KO loss, Bermudez will try to end a four-fight skid. During that streak, he was KO’d by “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung before losing three consecutive split decisions to Darren Elkins, Andre Fili and Rick Glenn.
“[Bermudez] is trying to save his job,” Edwards told MMASucka. “I’m expecting him to throw everything and the kitchen sink at us.”
Bermudez will be making his UFC lightweight debut; the long-time featherweight holds wins over Max Holloway, Clay Guida, Tatsuya Kawajiri and Rony Jason to name a few. Edwards feels Bermudez’s body of work makes him one of his most talented opponents to date; right up there with Madge, but for different reasons.
“In terms of resume, on paper, [Bermudez] is probably the most versed and has the most experience,” Edwards said. “Don was a little tougher of a match-up just from being a taller, lankier guy; he’s 6’1” and I’m 5’8”. Dennis is a little bit smaller at 5’6”.
“The reach and size advantage is definitely going to be in our favor. In terms of overall experience, Dennis definitely takes the cake. He’s been a top-15, top-10 guy at 145 for a long time and he’s been in some wars. He has real crisp boxing technique, and a little scrappy wrestling technique as well.”
“Everything he’s good at, I’m good at.”
Edwards believes it will be his frame and six-inch reach advantages that will win him the fight against Bermudez, as he’ll look to negate anything “The Menace” tries to attack him with.
“Bermudez will be trying to wrestle with a wrestler who’s bigger and stronger than him,” Edwards said. “He’ll try to throw bombs with a bigger, more powerful guy like myself. Everything he’s good at, I’m good at. He’s going to have to mix it up and bring some new things to the table or he’s going to get beat at his own game.”
Edwards believes both he and Bermudez will have to feel each other out early on. Bermudez, as a former featherweight, will have a higher pace than anyone Edwards has fought, while Bermudez will have to get adjusted to the size and power of lightweights.
If “T” Edwards emerges victorious over a name like Bermudez, he feels it will re-solidify his prospect status and put him in the conversation as a future contender.
“We have what it takes to make a run for the title eventually,” he said.
Edwards sees the fight going one of two ways. His power and striking could lead him to a knockout, or he could grab Bermudez and beat him up against the cage while possibly showcasing his ground game.
Edwards and Bermudez will meet at UFC on ESPN+ 1 in Brooklyn, NY on January 19.
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