UFC 272 Jorge Masvidal vs Colby Covington: Tyron Woodley makes prediction

  • Tom Ward

Tyron Woodley has backed Jorge Masvidal to beat bitter rival Colby Covington at UFC 272.

‘Gamebred’ Masvidal headlines the T-Mobile Arena next month against former friend and roomate Covington in Las Vegas on March 5.

Former UFC welterweight champion Woodley, 40, was asked to predict the outcome of the much-anticipated grudge match.

And the American MMA fighter – who has made the transition over to the world of boxing – has tipped Masvidal, 37, to come out on top.

Woodley told MMA Junkie: “Masvidal just needs to … keep his emotions and not turn it into where he just wants to fight him and hurt him and try to embarrass him – just really use what he does best.

“He has the best boxing, I feel like, in MMA right now. I feel like his hand speed is crazy. His ability to work the body is nuts.

“Colby Covington does not like body shots. I knew it. Why I didn’t go there more often, I don’t know.

“Masvidal knows it. He gave me some tips on it. I think he’s just going to work him to the body.”

TAMPA, FLORIDA – DECEMBER 15: Tyron Woodley works out during a media workout at the Seminole Hard Rock Tampa pool prior to her December 18th fight against Jake Paul on December 15, 2021 in Tampa, Florida. (Photo by Julio Aguilar/Getty Images)

Woodley did acknowledge that Covington’s wrestling could come in handy against a dangerous striker like Masvidal.

He continued: “Colby has to go and take him down a million times. The unfortunate thing for Masvidal is, if he goes for 10, he’s going to get one.

“It’s a lot of cardio to try to come out with some fresh arms and make some accurate shots when you’ve been fighting that double leg, that single leg and back takes and just [the] annoying hanging on and lingering on and baby taps, just so they don’t stop you. That’s what he’s got to do.

“Colby’s dumb, but he’s smart. He’s stupid as f***, but he’s kind of smart as hell. He’s not going to make nobody fight a fight that don’t make sense.

“He didn’t have to wrestle Usman because Usman didn’t let his balls drop yet as far as striking. So he could sit there and strike with him the whole time. You knew he was not going to shoot with me.

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“He was coming, pumping my leg, and at any chance he would get, he was at the leg. He has to on Masvidal right away. If you think he’s going to set up and try to strike with Masvidal to prove something – he’s not that stupid.”

However, he doesn’t think it will make much of a difference anyway, as he expects Masvidal to win regardless.

Woodley predicted: “I feel like Masvidal is going to win, because Masvidal is always big brother.

“Once you have big brother syndrome over someone, I feel like you can’t really shake that unless you have a big breakout moment and you can consistently keep up.

“There’s a couple of guys that I used to wrestle and they would always beat me. Then I would beat them one time and I just f******* got a little cocky and I just started beating them consecutively. That don’t happen very often.

“I don’t think Colby had enough time fighting at the highest level in the gym with Masvidal to have had that moment. Whenever he started getting to the point where he started talking enough to get himself in position, he had to leave the gym.

“They weren’t even training together anymore. So I don’t think he had a large enough victory in the gym.”

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