One UFC champion has sounded off the recent controversy involving a UFC prospect.
Colby Covington and former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum recently got into a heated altercation while down in Sydney, Australia, which was the site of UFC Fight Night 121.
Covington filmed some of the incident and posted it on Instagram Live. According to the UFC prospect, Werdum punched him in the face. Covington also called Werdum an anti-gay slur.
Covington is no stranger to creating controversy in Brazil as it all began leading up to his fight with Demian Maia in Sao Paulo.
During his appearance on Monday’s episode of The MMA Hour with Ariel Helwani, Woodley called Covington’s actions “embarrassing.”
“When I’m looking down the scope and I’m looking through my sniper rifle, you’re (Covington) not in the crosshairs,” Woodley said Monday. “There’s so many other fighters that are right in that mix that I’m looking at. There’s guys who are fighting, maybe rematches and former champions from different divisions, and people who are really running through it. There’s a lot of hungry guys, and he’s in that category with guys like Darren Till, Kamaru Usman. He’s right in there.
“The difference between them and him: Those guys are doing it with their gloves. They’re doing it with their actions. He’s just thinking that he’s supposed to talk his way into a title shot, and it’s sad that our sport does that.”
Since defeating former title contender Demian Maia at UFC Sao Paulo several weeks ago, Covington has been campaigning for the next title shot at Woodley. Although the division is stacked with worthy challengers, there is no clear-cut No. 1 contender right now.
“When you’ve got a person who, he had 5,000 followers until he disrespected an entire country, he doesn’t quite put himself on that same radar,” Woodley said. “When you’ve got a person who fabricates and makes up stories — Chael Sonnen was good at it,
Michael Bisping is good at it, Conor McGregor is the best at it. If you’re going to go that road, at least sound right. Don’t on one hand be (saying), ‘I’m this tough guy,’ and your script sound stupid.
“Fans want to see blood and knockouts. They don’t want to see some guy just take somebody down over and over again. So I just find it really corny. And yeah, it’s worked, he talked himself into the Demian Maia and Dong Hyun Kim (fights), two guys I (beat). I wrote the book on Maia; he went out and checked it out at the library. Checked the book out, read it, and went out there and got bloodied by a jiu-jitsu guy. Now he thinks he’s going to fight for a title. Sit down somewhere. He’s embarrassing himself.”
The UFC prospect has repeatedly claimed that he made Woodley quit in a sparring session at ATT.
“I like to let the things in training camp stay in training camp, but his (story) is so hilarious, (with) how many eyewitnesses (we had), so much video,” Woodley said. “Like, I don’t know if he remembers that my gym is camera-ed, so there’s so many videos that show the training. It’s just funny that he would just go on this rant, because he knows. I told him personally. … ‘Do whatever you want to do with it. If this how you feel like you need to make your name, have at it, do what you need to do.’ I said, ‘But I’m not going to give you the time of day.’
“He said, ‘I’m just trying to build a fight, man. I’m trying to make us both money.’ I’m like, ‘I’m already making money. What are you talking about? You don’t need to help me. I’m making money. I’m making more money on FOX than you make in fighting, so why would you need to help me out?’
When he was the up-and-coming wrestler import, I was the guy who was like, ‘Oh, look, Colby’s here, he’s a wrestler too,’ kinda show him the ropes kind of deal. No respect, man. I remember what I paid him for training camp, that was all the money he had to his name, what I gave him. It was his whole life savings, what I paid him in training camp. Just the irony of this guy.”