If there’s one fighter in the UFC today who can ruffle some feathers, it’s welterweight contender Colby Covington. “Chaos” spares no one and targets everyone in his sights, no matter if it comes off as tasteless at times.
Covington draws more haters than fans with his brand of trash talking, and for former champion Michael Bisping, it tends to appear disingenuous.
“You know Covington, I mean he’s an easy target right? He’s the king of cringe really,” Bisping said during a recent episode of his Believe You Me podcast (transcript by BJPenn.com). “I mean we talk about Henry Cejudo being the king of cringe, ‘Triple C’ and all that stuff but no, Covington is. He’s there, he’s posing with the girls in the hot tub. He’s doing all these types of things, he’s wearing the MAGA hat all the time with the shades.
“It’s all a little bit forced. Of course he’s taking a leaf out of the Chael Sonnen playbook. He’s trying to do that whole thing. He’s trying to replicate it, but for me it just looks a little bit forced.”
“The Count”, who himself was a loud talker during his heyday, did recognize Covington’s skills inside the Octagon.
“I will say this, in the cage he’s a formidable man. He’s very, very good,” Bisping said of Covington. “The results speak for themselves. He’s beaten some really, really good competition but the whole shtick it just doesn’t seem authentic and when it’s not authentic that’s when I kinda have a problem with it.”
Former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley shares the same sentiment.
“It’s kind of embarrassing for our division,” Woodley said Monday during the Ariel Helwani MMA Show. “Cringeworthy is not even the word (to describe it). It’s scripted, but you don’t remember (your lines).
“If you want to talk sh-t, make it good. Make it like Conor. Make it like Chael. But if you’re doing it and you look terrible, you sound terrible, you don’t remember it. The hat… at least get a new hat each time. The suit game is garbage. You’re making us look dumb.”
Covington began to take on this persona around the time he fought and defeated Demian Maia in 2017. So in case anyone’s forgotten (if anyone really remembers), here he is two years prior at a post-fight media scrum after winning over Mike Pyle at UFC 187.