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‘He needs to get rolling again’ — Cormier says Covington headed to ‘no man’s land’ due to inactivity

The UFC Hall of Famer believes Covington could be outside of the title picture if he doesn’t get a fight scheduled soon. 

With the rest of the UFC welterweight division moving along, Daniel Cormier hopes Colby Covington gets a fight to avoid being stuck in a perpetual state of limbo.

Recently, the promotion has announced pivotal fights such as Leon Edwards vs. Kamaru Usman III and Gilbert Burns vs. Jorge Masvidal. Though unscheduled, Khamzat Chimaev and Belal Muhammad find themselves atop the division and have bolstered their cases for a potential championship opportunity next. Noticeably absent from that group was Colby Covington, who has yet to return to the Octagon after defeating Jorge Masvidal at UFC 272 this past March.

“The only guy that’s missing is Colby Covington,” said Cormier on a recent episode of DC & RC on ESPN. “What about 1A or 1B? He’s been 1B for so long. What about Colby? Is he going to be fighting Belal Muhammad next? Is he going to fight Khamzat? What does all this do for Colby Covington? Where is Colby Covington?”

Shortly after his win over Masvidal, ‘Chaos’ was allegedly assaulted by ‘Gamebred’ outside a restaurant in Miami Beach, Fla. As a result, Covington suffered several injuries, including a broken tooth, wrist abrasion and ‘brain injury.’ Masvidal was charged with aggravated battery and criminal mischief, but has entered not guilty pleas to both charges.

Since then, the only Covington-related update came from UFC president Dana White, who said in August that the UFC was ‘making plans’ for him to fight soon. Those plans have yet to be revealed, which has left Cormier concerned about his status as a contender.

“He won his last fight, but time has passed,” said Cormier. “Right after he beat him, with Leon Edwards becoming the champion, if Kamaru didn’t take the fight, we could’ve been like, ‘Well, Colby’s long been 1B’, but time is passing. Being idle isn’t the best for a guy in a division that’s constantly moving. But the moment Colby Covington starts to re-insert himself, he’ll be loud, he’ll be boisterous, he’ll have a lot to say and people will start to pay attention. And then right away, he’s back relevant because we have not seen anyone but Kamaru Usman for a really long time solve the puzzle that is Colby Covington.

“So I think he’ll be relevant for a while, but I think he needs to get rolling again because momentum is key in this sport,” continued Cormier. “And when you don’t have momentum, nobody’s really checking for you, and I think Colby Covington needs to make sure he doesn’t find himself in that place where he is in no man’s land out on an island by himself.”

As Cormier mentioned, Covington has options in Muhammad or Chimaev for his return. ‘Remember the Name’ and ‘Borz’ have repeatedly called out the No. 2 contender in recent months.

About the author: Kristen King is a writer for Bloody Elbow. She has covered combat sports since 2016. (full bio)

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