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The supervillain of the fight game: The rise of the loudmouth yet confident Colby Covington

Colby Covington is a man who loves the spotlight and the cameras on himself
Colby Covington is a man who loves the spotlight and the cameras on himself
Soumik Datta
ANALYST
Modified 19 Sep 2020, 23:36 IST
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Brash, despicable, yet confident and skillful. A look into Colby Covington's rise to the top, as the UFC's most hated figure.

In the world of Combat Sports, you either win some or occasionally you draw some. However, almost every fighter who has ever stepped foot into this sport eventually faces the dreadful day when he/she suffers that ill-fated loss. The loss that sometimes makes or breaks careers, the loss that on so many cases has marked the beginning of one's downfall even at the highest level.

Luckily for Colby Covington, a submission defeat to Warlley Alves in the undercard of UFC 194 didn't cause much damage to his resume, as the self-proclaimed supervillain of the UFC went on to discover an unusual inventiveness in the POTUS Donald Trump. Sporting a pair of sunglasses to shield his eyes, a MAGA hat on his head, and the 170-lb interim strap around his shoulder, "World Champ Colby Covington" was on course to "Make Welterweight Great Again". It was all there for the taking for the man they called Chaos.

How did Colby Covington legitimize his place as the UFC's most hated fighter?

Over the years, the UFC has been the home to some of the best trash talkers in the game. Chael Sonnen, Michael Bisping, and Conor McGregor are undoubtedly some of the biggest names in that department but if you look into it, none of them have been fairly close to the heat generated by Colby Covington. One of the primary reasons for that being, Covington is as raw as they come and isn't hesitant to hold himself back from slandering his opponents, or an entire country for that matter. After all, how often have you seen a UFC fighter spoil the biggest movies of the year on Twitter just to create further animosity towards himself?

But there he was, Colby Covington, who on the night when Star Wars: The Last Jedi was released in theaters, took to Twitter and wrote:

"Luke Skywalker dies. Saved you nerds 2h 33m of your virgin lives. You're welcome. Try something new, its' ladies night. Go get laid."

If that wasn't enough, Colby Covington also remains as the culprit to spoil Avengers: The Infinity War, only to receive further hate comments towards himself, which he so proudly has absorbed to date. While all that might seem pretty decent even in terms of Covington's standards, the former interim welterweight champion did cross the line in October of 2017 at UFC Sao Paolo. Following his dominant win over Octagon veteran Demian Maia, Covington wasn't just satisfied with the victory and wanted to make a statement out of the nation of Brazil, a statement that put the MMA world on notice and also served as a warning message for tomorrow night's opponent, Tyron Woodley.

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"I'm the supervillain of the whole entire UFC"

A character evolution three years in the making, Colby Covington, who despite compiling a winning streak of four fights in the lead-up to his infamous bout against Maia in Brazil, was seemingly on the verge of being cut by the UFC. While many considered him to be just another regular-day fighter, deep down inside, Chaos knew that something had to change, and growing up as a fan of the legendary Ric Flair came in handy for Covington at the right time. The self-proclaimed People's Champ proved that one's skill set inside the Octagon wasn't the only attribute that mattered and a fighter had to learn the art of selling fights. An art that was mastered by The American Gangster, Chael Sonnen, and soon picked up by Covington himself.

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Colby Covington's growth as a fighter saw him train alongside the very best at the American Top Team, a decorated list that also included the one and only, Jorge Masvidal. Cornering each other in fights, fooling inside locker rooms, and wrestling each other at the gym, the duo was truly one of the greatest pairings of all time but as the saying goes from J. Cole's Middle Child, "They act like two legends cannot coexist", Colby Covington and Jorge Masvidal soon went from best friends to bitter enemies. With both men destined for greatness, Masvidal adapted his 'Street Jesus' character, as he went on to establish his place as one of the BMF's of the UFC, whereas, Covington took the much-hated path and became Gamebred's counterpart in the welterweight division.

While the world waits for the highly anticipated clash between Jorge Masvidal and Colby Covington inside the Octagon, Chaos has the daunting task of getting past former welterweight champion, Tyron Woodley in less than 24 hours. A fight that has come full circle in terms of Covington's growth as a fighter, a rivalry that will finally be settled in Las Vegas after three years of bad beef between two of welterweight's finest.

Published 19 Sep 2020, 23:36 IST
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