With two valiant performances against reigning 170-pound king Kamaru Usman, Covington has cemented his place as the second-best welterweight in the UFC in the eyes of many.
But having fallen short against the titleholder twice since 2019, the former interim champion’s path to the top looks to be blocked by a large Nigerian hurdle for as long as the divisional status quo remains.
With that in mind, “Chaos” has hinted towards a potential pursuit of gold in a different weight class. Having announced his intention to chase champ-champ status following his UFC 268 clash with Usman last November, Covington continued his callouts of “The Last Stylebender” following his defeat.
Now, as he approaches a long-awaited grudge match against bitter rival Jorge Masvidal, Covington has once again had the middleweight kingpin’s name on his lips. And with the controversial welterweight’s feud and remarks towards Adesanya’s compatriot Usman during their saga, the backstory would certainly write itself.
But while Covington is hoping to put an emphatic end to his rivalry with former teammate and friend Masvidal and advance towards a meeting in the Octagon with Adesanya, the UFC president isn’t so keen.
During a recent interview with TMZ Sports, White revealed what “Chaos” would have to do to enter the title conversation at 185 pounds, and it’s likely more than Covington would have been hoping for…
“I mean, Colby would have to go up and beat [Jared] Cannonier or [Robert] Whittaker or somebody like that to even be in the discussion with a fight with Adesanya.” (h/t Sportskeeda)
Covington Has To Get Past Masvidal First
Before setting his sights on Adesanya, another middleweight contender, or anyone else at 170 pounds for that matter, Covington has a stiff test in front of him this weekend in the form of “Gamebred.”
In the UFC 272 main event, scheduled for this Saturday, March 5, in Las Vegas, two former friends, roommates, and teammates at ATT will collide, and will certainly bring an intense level of animosity into the cage with them.
While their non-title fight headlines the UFC’s third pay-per-view of 2022, the likes of Edson Barboza, Bryce Mitchell, Kevin Holland, and Marina Rodriguez will also be in action.
While Masvidal will be hoping to rebound from consecutive losses to Usman and potentially return to contention, Covington will put his place as the #1 welterweight on the line and look to keep his hopes of a middleweight title shot alive.
Would you like to see Colby Covington challenge for Israel Adesanya’s middleweight title down the line?