It wasn’t just the fact Fabian ‘The Assassin’ Edwards was specially flown out to the states to sign on the dotted line for Bellator that marked him out as clearly one to watch. It’s not just his unbeaten record, five finishes in a career built on a solid foundation of an unbeaten amateur career. It’s his unwavering self belief and confidence in himself and his abilities that is infectious, he’s clearly a prospect on a mission.
One would think that after seeing his recent foe, Kent Kauppinen, take out the legendary Allessio Sakara that this would have instilled perhaps some new found respect for an opponent he has shared cage time with. It’s clear Edwards doesn’t give praise easily or willy nilly as he bellows, ” Kent Kauppinen is shit!,” Clearly disgusted by my praise for the athlete he continues to unload, “Honest to God he’s shit. He landed one punch on me. His win over Alessio Sakara doesn’t mean shit and it doesn’t make me rate him, he’s shit!”
Edwards’ self belief continues to exudes down the phone line as we discuss how he ended up with, on paper what seems like a formidable test in the form of Lee Chadwick for his first official assignment since officially signing for Bellator at the end of last year. As Edwards explains he had mapped out his first two opponents way before signing on the dotted line, “I called for Lee Chadwick and Mike Shipman as soon as I was signed to Bellator,” he said. Continuing he laughs, “I wanted them added to the ‘Easy Money Tour’ immediately. I wanna take Lee Chadwick out because he is a very experienced guy. He is the former Cage Warriors Champion and for me to be classed as one of the best in the UK and the world I have to beat these types of guys.”
As is his usual M.O ‘The Assassin’ got to work dragging Chadwick into an online series of back and forth exchanges that whilst on the surface seemed like lighthearted attempts to poke the proverbial bear, but as Edwards went on to explain he was being deadly serious with his accusations he levelled at Chadwick regarding performance enhancing drugs saying, “I honestly believe he’s on gear. I know a few people in Liverpool who have said he’s on the stuff and a few people who are in his gym are on the stuff too. Chadwick’s on steroids, that’s not gonna prevent the knock out. He can be taking a whole case load of it but he’s still gonna get finished.”
The more we speak about the forthcoming match up the more I get more than a distinct impression Edwards has studied his opponent from many angles and facets and is ready to dissect and dismantle him based on what seems to be a detailed review of Chadwick’s entire career.
“I think he’s experienced but in certain ways he comes across as an amateur. He is not on my level and has not improved in the last 10 years. He is still doing the same thing he’s been doing for years. After I smoke Chadwick in the first I wonder if people will be saying that I need more tests. He’s just another fight and another first round finish.”
Edwards is clearly also driven by the turn of events that transpired when Mike ‘Sea bass’ Shipman met his training partner Yannick Bahati on BAMMA 31 in 2017. The clash ended with Bahati being KO’d at Shipman’s hand and Edwards is keen to avenge the loss and to pay Shipman back for taunting him via social media. His tone turns very reflective as he offers, “I want Mike Shipman next, that’s the fight to make.” Continuing he quipped, “He was brave enough to message me on Facebook. So let’s see if he’s brave enough to respond when I call him out after I smoke Lee Chadwick in the first.”
As we discuss future opponents we touch on Paul Daley’s previous assertions that he would entertain a few fights at middleweight should he achieve all that he wants to at welterweight. A fight with Daley does not seem to phase ‘The Assassin’ and he also has a clear idea who will win when Paul Daley meets Michael Page in the coming weeks in Conneticut.
“I see Michael ‘Venom’ Page stopping Paul Daley. I think Venom’s movement will be too much for him. Semtex has power but he likes to load up and he’ll leave himself open for MVP to strike. It’s gonna be a cracking fight.
Paul Daley is a fight I’d take for sure. I would entertain that fight definitely. He’s got a decent little name. He’s an experienced opponent. He’ll be a nice chin to stick on my wall. If he does come up here to middleweight I would take that fight. I’m not really scared of no-one I’m a true fighter alot of these fighters are just pretending.”