Colby Covington claims he nearly pulled out of Usman fight with food poisoning

Colby Covington, UFC 245
Image via @colbycovmma on Instagram (photographer not listed)

Back at UFC 245 in December, Colby Covington came up short in a bid to wrest the UFC welterweight title from Kamaru Usman, losing by fifth-round TKO after four competitive rounds. If Covington is to be believed, however, he was not at his best on the night of the fight — far from it.

Speaking to Christian Robertson on the It’s All About Who You Know podcast, Covington divulged that he was dealing with a serious bout of food poisoning right before the fight — and he’s blaming the UFC’s chefs.

“I’m not making excuses,” Covington began. “I haven’t really told anybody, but the UFC was preparing meals for me all fight week, and I ended up getting really sick of one of their meals. I think they didn’t cook the chicken very good, and I got food poisoning two nights before the fight. I puked like 30 times, literally like 30 times.”

Covington continued, explaining that he very nearly pulled out of his fight with Usman, but was convinced to follow through on the matchup by his manager Dan Lambert.

“I told my manager Dan Lambert ‘I’m going to have to pull out of the fight, man,'” Covington said. “He’s like ‘no, you can’t pull out man, you’re the main event. You can’t do this to the UFC, you just need to go through with it.’

“I ended up going through with it, but I didn’t feel my best,” Covington added. “That kind of played into the decision not to wrestle [in the fight] because I didn’t feel strong.

“It’s like I was holding back a little bit because I knew I was puking, my liver and intestines were all messed up and I wasn’t at full strength. So what I’m trying to say is I was on my worst day and ‘Marty Fake Newsman’ was on his best day and I still beat him. So you can imagine what’s going to happen in the rematch when I’m at my best and he’s at whatever level he’s at.

“It’s going to be a completely different outcome.”

What do you think of this claim from Colby Covington?

This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 2/17/2020.