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‘I’m not retiring’ - Woodley won’t be making any big changes after Covington loss

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Tyron Woodley took to Instagram shortly after his loss on Saturday at UFC VEGAS 11 to Colby Covington, and while he doesn’t sound sure just what went wrong, it seems like he feels he’s made the right moves.

UFC Fight Night: Covington v Woodley Photo by Todd Lussier/Zuffa LLC

From the outsider’s perspective, UFC Vegas 11 seemed like it represented a definite turning point in Tyron Woodley’s career. Here he was with an opponent that seemed tailor made to bring out his aggression, to force him into a fire fight, and give him a chance to show off the kind of skill that once made him champion.

Only, it didn’t. Woodley once again looked fairly listless on his way to a 5th round TKO loss. And after the event Dana White seemed to intimate that this might be the end of the road of the ‘Chosen One.’

“I think that he should start thinking about hanging it up,” Dana White told reporters after Woodley’s loss to Covington. “He’s had a great career, he’s had a great run. He’s made money.”

If that’s the feeling from fans and the UFC President, however, it doesn’t appear to be one shared by the longtime ATT & Roufusport fighter. In a message delivered over his Instagram stories, Woodley told fans that while he may not be quite sure what went wrong in his latest loss, he’s not about to make any big changes. And definitely not about to retire.

“I’m not retiring – I’m not giving it up,” Woodley said in a video message on social media (transcript via MMA Fighting). “I’m not switching all my coaches up. I’m not changing the continent I live on. I’m not doing all that.

“Some sh-t didn’t happen and guess what? I don’t know why it didn’t happen. I did everything to make it happen. Now we just take a deep breath and see what’s next.”

To Woodley’s credit, the 83 significant strikes he attempted over five rounds against Covington was the most he’d thrown out of any of his last three losses. So clearly there was some work done to pick up the pace in place.

However, with this latest loss in the books, Woodley hasn’t officially won a round in MMA since his 2nd round submission victory over Darren Till in 2018. Even his infamously low output bouts against Stephen Thompson saw Woodley nearly doubling his sig. strike output from the rate he’s been at in his last three fights. If he can’t find a way back to that kind of form, winning at the elite levels may remain an incredibly difficult proposition.