Maybe you hate Colby Covington. Maybe you find his over-the-top pro wrestling bad guy schtick corny.
But even Covington’s biggest detractors have to give the man his due for his work in the cage.
The American Top Team competitor scored the biggest victory of his career on Saturday night as he scored a victory over former UFC lightweight champion Rafael dos Anjos in the co-feature bout of UFC 225. The judges’ scores at Chicago’s United Center were 49-46 and a pair of 48-47s as Covington was awarded an interim UFC welterweight title.
“This is the real championship belt,” Covington said. “I’m going to do what real champs should and take this belt to the White House and put it on president Donald Trump’s desk.”
Covington pushed the pace from the get-go, hitting his first takedown attempt of the fight and keeping RDA off-balance. Dos Anjos, for his part, still managed to land decent shots to the body, both punches and knees, in what ended up a close round all thigns considered.
But Covington had his best rounds in the second and third, as he continued to push a relentless pace and keep dos Anjos backpedaling. RDA’s frustrations showed in the third as he drilled Covington in the third with a kick to the groin.
In the fourth, RDA cracked Covington with a huge left to the jaw at the outset, and he had Covington on the run for the first time in the first. Covington scored a late takedown, but it was likely RDA’s round.
The final round, though, saw Covinginton once again clamped down, pressuring, outworking, and just generally bullying Dos Anjos in the clinch.
The victory marked Covington (14-1) was sixth in a row and put him at 9-1 in the UFC. Dos Anjos (28-10) had his three-fight win streak snapped and lost for the first time since going up to 170 pounds.
The UFC decided to award an interim welterweight title belt to the winner, as Tyron Woodley, who fought four times from mid-2016 to mid-2017, was on the sidelines with a shoulder injury.
Covington, of course, had words for Woodley.
“This is the real championship belt,” Covington said. “If you get someting to say, come see me, b*tch.”