Tyron Woodley is openly admitting just how painful it is to be on the losing end of a fight against Colby “Chaos” Covington.
The feud between Tyron Woodley and Colby Covington goes back years. Specifically, it began not long after Covington turned into a bonafide heel around the time he defeated Demian Maia in Sao Paulo, Brazil, and proceeded to call Brazilians “filthy animals.” Right as Covington was beginning to go down this path in 2017, Tyron Woodley told his former training partner that he did not have to go that route to promote himself. According to Woodley, Covington would have none of his advice and decided to continue amping it up (transcription via Adam Martin).
“Well, he wasn’t really disrespecting me, he was doing an act,” Woodley said in an interview with TSN. “I knew about the act, I even talked to him about it. I told him, ‘There’s a different way to do it, you’re going to look stupid and silly. But if that’s what you want to do, go ahead and do it.’ He’s like, ‘Man, I’m just trying to get money and build this up and we can make money at the end.’ I gave him attention one time on a FOX episode and that was it. I told him I wouldn’t say anything else.”
Feud With Covington Has Sour Ending For Woodley
Eventually, Covington, armed with his alleged “gimmick,” would target Woodley directly. This was not surprising since Woodley was the UFC welterweight champion, a goal that Covington was (and still is) actively pursuing. The UFC targeted a title bout between the two while Woodley wore the welterweight strap, but it never came to fruition due to injuries and negotiation roadblocks.
The two would eventually face one another last year in the main event of UFC Fight Night 178. Woodley entered the fight on the heels of a two-fight losing streak, and it showed. Covington easily bumped that number up to three before and after bumping his gums at Woodley full force. Woodley had hoped that a win would be a symbolic victory for unity and the Black Lives Matter movement by defeating Colby Covington, a proud supporter of the polarizing MAGA movement, but he ended up being victimized in a lopsided defeat.
In this TSN interview, Woodley was quite candid about the disappointment he felt but takes solace in the fact that no movement is defined by the win or loss of a single battle.
“It hurt to lose to him just because he was willing to use an act to stir up some negative controversy with some things that are very sensitive. Whether it was with Brazilians or if it was the political debate, whatever he was doing, it was all a game. I think certain things you shouldn’t play with. For someone I used to pay as a training partner who never thought about winning a second against me in any training format in life.
“To lose to a guy like that when I had a chance to go out there and beat him, send a strong message to the division, send a strong message to America that we should start together, and also just to kind of silence him a little bit. Yeah, it kind of hurt for those things more than anything else. But looking back, I never lost an opportunity to reach out to those people to send a positive message. In victory or defeat, it’s still the platform.”
Tyron Woodley will look to rebound from this devastating loss tomorrow night at UFC 260 when he takes on #10-ranked Vicente Luque in the main event.
Keep it locked and dialed in on MMANews.com tomorrow night for live results, updates, and highlights on the UFC 260 event!