Fabian Edwards vs. Charlie Ward

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All the necessary pieces seem to be in place for Fabian Edwards to make some serious waves in the Bellator MMA middleweight division.

‘The Assassin’ will take on SBG Ireland’s Charlie Ward in the Bellator 287 co-main event on Saturday at the Allianz Cloud Arena in Milan, Italy. Edwards – the younger brother of current Ultimate Fighting Championship welterweight titleholder Leon Edwards – has won five from seven appearances since joining the promotion led by Scott Coker in 2019. He has competed for the last time at Bellator 281, where he took down Lyoto Machida with an elbow and follow-up punches in the first round of their May 13 encounter. Ward, meanwhile, enters the cage on a three-game winning streak. He compiled a 7-1 record at Bellator.

As Edwards and Ward inch closer to their next battle at 185lbs, a look at some of the numbers that have been with them so far:

29: Years for Edwards, born in Kingston, Jamaica on March 24, 1993.

3: Edwards wins by submission, representing 30% of his career total (10). His go-to methods: two bare rear chokes and an armbar. Edwards has four more wins by knockout or technical knockout (40%) and three more by decision (30%).

60: It took Edwards seconds to bury Claudio Conti with a kick under the banner of the British Association of Mixed Martial Arts on May 12, 2018. More than four years later, it remains his fastest result to date .

16: Rounds completed by Edwards as a professional mixed martial artist. He has gone the distance five times and is 3-2 in those fights.

.857: Cumulative winning percentage between the two opponents – Austin Vanderford and Costello van Steenis – who beat Edwards. They have a combined record of 24-4.

41: Years for Ward, born on December 17, 1980 in Portlaoise, Ireland.

6: Ward wins by knockout or technical knockout, accounting for 60% of his career total (10). His list of Bellator victims: Kyle Kurtz, Justin Moore, Jamie Stephenson, Martin Hudson and John Redmond. Ward has four more decision wins (40%).

1,071: The days since the last time Ward suffered a setback. Pietro Penini was the author, as he took a unanimous decision from the Irishman at Bellator ‘MVP vs Melillo’ on November 23, 2019.

1: End in less than a minute on Ward’s resume. He hit the aforementioned Stephenson in 34 seconds as part of the Bellator 217 undercard in February 2019.

49: Combined victories between the four opponents – Penini, Galore Bofando, Abdul Razak Alhassan and John Phillips – who defeated Ward. They sport a cumulative winning percentage of .681 at 49-22-1.

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