Former interim UFC welterweight champion Colby Covington said he has complete control of his emotions ahead of his grudge match with former friend Jorge Masvidal at UFC 272.
The former teammates were once almost inseparable as they made their way up the ranks in the UFC. But after a rift between the two saw them go their separate ways, they reunite inside the octagon at T-Mobile Arena in a matchup filled with bad blood.
And, after the pair had faced off for the final time at the ceremonial weigh-ins on Friday, Covington visited with UFC reporter Megan Olivi to share his take on the upcoming clash.
Speaking about his exchanges with Masvidal throughout fight week, Covington said, “They’ve been great. I see the fear in his eyes.
“He can say whatever he wants to say to the media, but I can tell when I see him face to face and I see the energy that he brings, he knows what’s going to happen… he knows it’s the end of his career.”
The bad blood has been clear for all to see in the lead-up to fight night in Las Vegas. But, despite the personal nature of the rivalry, Covington said he’s confident he can keep a lid on any emotions that may present themselves on the night
“I’m really good at channeling that energy, the fuel the haters give me and the people that doubt me. So I don’t get caught up in the drama and the emotion,” he said.
“I’m not an Ultimate Feelings Champion, I’m an Ultimate Fighting Champion, so… it’s just going to be another night in the office and I’m going to do what I do best, that’s get my hand raised.”
The pair know each other’s skillsets very well from their time training together on the mats of American Top Team. But now, with Covington training at MMA Masters, he said he holds the tactical advantage ahead of their matchup.
“I do feel like I know Jorge in and out and I know what type of gameplan he’s going to come with,” he said.
“He doesn’t know what type of gameplan I’m going to come with. I’m at a new gym, renewed with new coaches. Cesar Carneiro, Daniel Valverde, Charlie Weiss and Jonathan Lopez, so you’re going to see the new Colby ‘Chaos’ Covington.
“Now I have a family around me. It’s not about paychecks and money. These guys actually love me like a family. They’re not in it for the money, they’re in it for the legacy, and we’re going to stamp our legacy.”
And, for Covington, victory alone isn’t enough on Saturday night. He’s targeting a perfect victory that will show his dominance, before eventually ending the bout early.
“A perfect night inside the octagon will be making Jorge drag it out, make him squeal, make him hurt, then finish him inside three rounds,” he stated.