Jorge Masvidal has opened up about targeting his former friend Colby Covington. Masvidal and Covington, who’d trained together and were known to be close friends for many years, have lately been involved in a heated rivalry with one another.
They trained together at the world-renowned ATT (American Top Team) gym and eventually fell out due to their common goal of winning the UFC welterweight title. While Jorge Masvidal still trains at ATT, Colby Covington has parted ways with the gym and has been training at MMA Masters since the split.
Colby Covington is a former interim UFC welterweight champion. Meanwhile, Jorge Masvidal competed at lightweight for several years before returning to welterweight in July 2015. Masvidal has competed at welterweight ever since, and notably won the BMF title by defeating MMA icon Nate Diaz via third-round TKO at UFC 244 (November 2019).
In an appearance on ESPN MMA’s Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show, Jorge Masvidal opened up on a myriad of topics. Most prominently, Gamebred addressed his rivalry with Colby Covington and recalled the time he targeted Covington in response to the latter’s constant trash talk.
Jorge Masvidal stated:
“Colby’s that one person that – and I always say this – wherever I see him, it’s a free pay-per-view right there, you know. And he knows that, that’s why he used to make videos like, ‘This guy is so unprofessional. He’s trying to fight me in the street’ – Because I got kicked out of the gym for trying to assault him one time.
"And then I used to go to the spots that he used to frequent a lot; and got the police called on me and things like that, you know. So, I know a lot of people think like, ‘Man, you’re an idiot. You’re a professional fighter. Why would you do that?’ – Because I f**king feel like, and nobody tells me what to do. You know, and it’s more like loyalty to me, like, you can’t do somebody wrong that I love. It’s just not gonna happen.”
Ariel Helwani then asked whether Jorge Masvidal legitimately got kicked out of ATT because of Colby Covington. Masvidal responded by saying:
“Not now. I’m back. They brought my a** back. They suspended us both. Our general, chief-in-commander Dan Lambert had put kind of like a rule like, ‘If you don’t have a bout agreement signed, I don’t want nobody talking c**p to nobody in the team, you know.
"And Colby had said like numerous things to me already. He’s the one that always said little puns here and there, and I was just completely ignoring him like, ‘Uh, whatever, you know. I’ll see you when I see you, right? Blah, blah, blah, blah. And then I had enough one day, and I said something back, and it got us both kicked out. I talked to Dan about it, and he was like, ‘You’re right, bro. This guy’s a piece of sh**. He’s got to go. I’m going to bring you right back, you know, where you’ve always been, and where you belong, and let this f**king coward f**king sink elsewhere.”
Colby Covington has consistently claimed that Jorge Masvidal has been ‘ducking’ him, whereas Masvidal too has often suggested that Covington has been avoiding a fight against him.
Jorge Masvidal is open to fighting Colby Covington, but on his terms and not on Covington’s
Ariel Helwani recalled talks of Jorge Masvidal and Colby Covington potentially fighting each other in a five-round bout, serving as rival coaches on The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) reality show, and other such rumors that were abound earlier this year.
Helwani asked whether a Jorge Masvidal vs. Colby Covington fight could still come to fruition in the future. Masvidal responded by stating:
“I’m gonna beat the cr** out of him too before my career is done, but I’m gonna fight the biggest and the best fights possible. Then, I’ll come down to these JV mother**kers, you know. And with Colby, it’s like, it’s somebody that I really can’t stand. So, I really wanna hurt this guy in a way that I have never done, you know. I wanna make it seem like the Ben Askren fight was very merciful compared to what I’m going to do to Colby, guaranteed. And that fight will take place, but when I f**king say so.” (*H/T Sportskeeda for the transcription)
Furthermore, Jorge Masvidal explained that Colby Covington’s fight against Kamaru Usman didn’t garner good PPV buys. Masvidal noted that Covington isn’t a draw and reiterated that the latter had his jaw broken by Usman.
Masvidal pointed out that he wouldn’t want to fight Covington, who got his jaw broken, but would rather first fight the individual who broke Covington’s jaw, Kamaru Usman.
The first fight between Jorge Masvidal and Kamaru Usman transpired at UFC 251 (July 2020). Masvidal had taken the fight on just six days’ notice and ended up losing via unanimous decision.
Presently, Jorge Masvidal is set to fight Kamaru Usman in a rematch, once again with the latter’s UFC welterweight title on the line, at UFC 261 (April 24th, 2021).
On the other hand, Colby Covington currently doesn’t have a fight booked.