Well, it’s official: Colby Covington has left American Top Team.
‘Chaos’ confirmed the news on Wednesday after ATT removed the former interim UFC welterweight champion from its website.
Covington, who used to train at ATT in Coconut Creek, Florida, says he left the premiere fight team to start his own gym, Colby Covington Incorporated.
“Nope,” Covington told theScore’s James Lynch when asked if he’s still with ATT (h/t BJPenn.com). “I’m not a member of the American Top Team gym in Coconut Creek. I’m a member of Colby Covington Incorporated. I’m a member of Colby Covington business, Colby Covington team. Everything. This is my team now. You can direct your complaints at me.”
Covington didn’t reveal the specifics of his new team but said he’s still working with many of the same coaches and training partners from ATT.
“We’re still in the process of putting together Team Colby Covington incorporated,” he said. “I have some great coaches around me. I haven’t changed my training partners and coaches a lot. I still have a lot of the same training partners and coaches, but we’re just on our time and doing our own thing and not affiliated with ATT in any way, shape or form.”
Covington added that he is treating his departure from ATT as a ‘blessing in disguise.’
“It’s the best change that could ever happen to me,” he said. “Sun sets, sun rises. One door opens, another closes. It’s a blessing in disguise. I’m really happy for the timing of how everything went down.”
Covington said the split was on good terms and that he still has the utmost respect for ATT owner Dan Lambert, who brought Covington under his tutelage around nine or ten years ago.
“I respect [ATT owner] Dan Lambert more than anybody in the world,” he said. “That guy will have my respect till the day I die. I owe that guy everything. He gave me an opportunity 10 years, nine years ago, out of college, to come train at his gym, American Top Team, full-time, and have food money and a place to live. He never left me out in the cold. He gave me every opportunity possible. I’m very thankful for my time there. I’m thankful for Dan Lambert as a person.
“All good things come to an end.”
Covington is currently ranked #2 in the UFC welterweight fighter rankings.