On December 14, Colby Covington gets his shot at officially becoming the undisputed welterweight champion when he challenges Kamaru Usman for the title in the UFC 245 headliner.
Should he win, a potential money-making fight that could come next is against Jorge Masvidal. The pair were former roommates and friends until their relationship fractured last year. Masvidal claimed it began over Covington not paying their coach following his win over Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 225.
Covington, meanwhile, has denied this as the pair have gone back-and-forth for a while now, leading many to want them to throw down at some point in the future.
Given Covington’s relentless style and wrestling background, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see him open as the favorite over Masvidal. Although “Gamebred” has been on fire in 2019 with three stoppage victories, Covington is a completely different fighter from his recent opponents.
“Chaos” impressed many, even his naysayers, when he comfortably outpointed former welterweight champion Robbie Lawler at UFC Newark in August.
Mixing takedowns with overwhelming striking, Covington went on to set a UFC-record 515 attempted significant strikes throughout the 25 minutes with 128 of his 179 that landed targeting Lawler’s head.
However, Masvidal wasn’t impressed.
“In some aspects, yeah [it was impressive], because he threw 500 punches but never hurt Robbie once,” Masvidal told Kevin Iole in a recent interview. “If you’re just doing this [imitating soft jabs] because you got the guy tired from wrestling, I don’t know. I don’t give you credit.”
Of course, Masvidal knows all about Covington’s style — after all, they have trained with each other for years. There is even video on YouTube of them grappling with each other. Although it’s a very old video, Covington notably dominates proceedings.
“Like they always say, it’s so cliche, but there’s levels to this, you know,” Masvidal added. “There’s a reason why Colby wouldn’t want to fight — if he could pick guys he wouldn’t want to fight. There’s a reason why he was saying we weren’t talking for a year and a half. ‘He’s my best friend’ — he was just saying that like four or five weeks ago that I’m his best friend. Now, all of a sudden I’m his mortal enemy?
“The guy has his wires crossed, especially when it comes to me. He got to train with me a little bit so you can imagine the trauma I’ve put him through.”