Jorge Masvidal and Colby Covington gave a likely preview of their fight-week appearances to promote UFC 272, bickering nonstop during an ESPN interview helmed by Stephen A. Smith.
As Smith noted before rolling tape on the pre-recorded spot, “interview” was a generous term for what was ultimately an interrupted stream of threats and insults as Masvidal and Covington talked over each other.
Masvidal told his former roommate and rival “you’re going to be in the ER in critical condition” two days after the pay-per-view event on Saturday in Las Vegas. He predicted Covington was “going to sniff my crotch all night long” to avoid a fistfight.
Covington, meanwhile, told Smith, ‘I don’t want to knock him out. I’m going to hurt him so bad, you’re not going to be the same person after I’m done with you. I guarantee you you’re going into a coma, b****.”
Covington reached back into Masvidal’s fight history, citing his rival’s losses Toby Imada, Gilbert Melendez and Al Iaquinta. He declared himself “I’m the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world,” prompting Masvidal to laugh out loud.
“Usman just beat the s*** out of you, you dumb f***,” Masvidal shouted.
“Are you still sleeping?” Covington shot back.
Death threats and insults aside, Masvidal and Smith tried to get Covington’s response to Masvidal’s allegation that he shorted their once-mutual coach Paulino Hernandez $12,500, leading Masvidal to foot the bill and distance himself from Covington before a public falling out.
Covington didn’t directly address the allegation but indicated he had done nothing wrong with Hernandez.
“[American Top Team owner and former Covington manager] Dan Lambert knows how much I got paid,” Covington fired back. “That night that I made that paycheck, I got paid half of what that said, the commission said I made double what I said. I got paid half that. Everything he says, he’s all talk and no walk.”
.@ColbyCovMMA compared Jorge Masvidal to a couple of teams @StephenASmith knows very well #UFC272— ESPN (@espn) March 1, 2022
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Masvidal previously told ESPN the non-payment stemmed from Covington’s winning fight against Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 225, which took place in Chicago. The State of Illinois Athletic Board does not publicly disclose fighter payouts; Hernandez told MMA Junkie Covington was paid $350,000 and said he received $5,000, well short of the percentage he said was verbally agreed upon.
Smith asked Masvidal what would happen if he suffered a loss to Covington, who like him has twice fallen short against current welterweight champ Kamaru Usman.
“I can’t – I won’t lose this fight,” Masvidal. “I’ll never lose to this fake piece of s***. It’s just not going to happen. But after I break his face, I’ll come back in here and give you the exclusive interview and tell you a lot more s*** about this individual.”
“You can talk tonight,” Covington fired back. “We’ll see who’s talking March 5, only on pay-per-view.”
"I'm gonna break his face "@GamebredFighter & @ColbyCovMMA pulled punches in their interview with @StephenASmith— UFC (@ufc) March 2, 2022
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