Dana White responds to Leon Edwards’ defiance toward Colby Covington: ‘You’re the guy’
SAN ANTONIO – UFC president Dana White says Leon Edwards has no choice but to fight Colby Covington next.
After White announced Covington (17-3 MMA, 12-3 UFC) as the next contender for Edwards (21-3 MMA, 13-2 UFC) following his UFC 286 title defense against Kamaru Usman earlier this month, “Rocky” said he’s not interested in the fight.
Edwards went as far as to say he wouldn’t sign a bout agreement for Covington if it was offered to him, but White thinks he will, because it’s his obligation as champ.
“Listen, it’s not like I’m a big, ‘Oh Colby.’ – Colby Covington deserves this shot at the title,” White told MMA Junkie and reporters post-fight at UFC on ESPN 43 on Saturday. “I don’t blame Leon. Leon just got through Usman twice and now he’s looking at another wrestler now with a funky style that’s tough to deal with. When you become the champ, everybody’s coming after you. All the straight killers are coming after you for the next three times a f*cking year, you’re faced with nothing but the baddest dudes in the world in your division.
“If you look at Usman and what he did – Usman ran through that division twice. Usman’s one of the greatest of all time. Leon just beat him twice. You’re the man, Leon. You’re the guy. And everyone’s coming after you, and it’s going to be Colby next.”
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White openly asked reporters to “explain” why Covington shouldn’t be the next contender for Edwards. When countered about Covington’s inactive schedule, White said Covington was “jumped and actually injured,” referencing his infamous alleged encounter with Jorge Masvidal.
White is adamant that Covington is more worthy of fighting Edwards than anyone else in the division, and he said the world can pencil it in as the next 170-pound title matchup.
“That was a no brainer,” White said. “If Usman doesn’t exist Colby’s been the champ now for a while. He’s been there forever. He cut the weight. He showed up to fill in for that fight and a million other reasons why he deserves that fight.”
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