Colby Covington claims UFC threatened to strip Kamaru Usman of welterweight title

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Top contender Colby Covington claims that the UFC threatened to strip his rival, UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman, of his 170lbs title.

Covington returns to the Octagon next month when he fights Usman in the main event of UFC 268 in what is a rematch between the two longtime rivals. The two welterweights previously met in the main event of UFC 245 in December 2019, a fight that Usman won via fifth-round TKO. Nearly two years later and now Covington will finally get his chance to fight Usman again. Only, according to Covington, it nearly didn’t happen at all.

Speaking to ESPN in a recent interview, Covington claimed that Usman and his manager Ali Abdelaziz initially refused to fight Covington. According to “Chaos,” the UFC told Usman that he would be stripped of his belt if he didn’t fight Covington. In the end, the rematch got done, and now the two will fight for welterweight supremacy at UFC 268. Covington is confident he can win the fight and is looking forward to proven he’s an elite welterweight.

“It’s been such a journey. It’s been tough. It wasn’t supposed to happen. They did not want it to happen. His manager, they were refusing. They were trying to find every way in the book out of fighting this rematch. They didn’t want this fight and the only reason they have to take it is the UFC gave them no choice. They said, ‘Hey, you fight this fight or we strip you. It’s one or the other. You’ve got to come out and prove you’re the best in the world. There needs to be no controversy surrounding this fight.’ So it’s been tough,” Covington said (via MMAFighting.com).

How excited are you to see the rematch between Colby Covington and Kamaru Usman at UFC 268, and who do you think wins the fight?

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