Kamaru Usman believes there is mutual respect with “great competitor” Colby Covington: “I know he respects me”

Kamaru Usman, Colby Covington
Image Credit: UFC

Kamaru Usman believes there is mutual respect with “great competitor” Colby Covington, suggesting that “I know he respects me.”

Usman and Covington are bitter rivals who first met at UFC 245 in December 2019, with Usman winning in the fifth round via TKO. For the past two years since that fight, Covington has been doing everything in his power to secure a rematch. Finally, he gets what he wants this Saturday night when he steps into the Octagon with Usman again in the main event of UFC 268. Usman, by the way, is the betting favorite to defend his title.

Speaking on the latest UFC Embedded ahead of this weekend’s big grudge match, Usman spoke about the mutual respect that he has towards Covington as a competitor. Although Usman is admittingly not a huge fan of the way that Covington conducts himself outside of the Octagon at times, he knows that he is a fantastic fighter who deserves to be in the position that he’s in. And Usman also believes that Covington feels similar about him.

“We’re going into the second fight with Colby now and I’m expecting the toughest Colby there’s been. Fighting a guy like Colby, you’d expect a lot of mutual respect because we’ve actually shared that Octagon for almost 25 minutes. He gets kind of a rep for the way that he behaves outside of the cage. I know he respects me, I know he does. He might not wanna show but I know he does. And I’ve a lot of respect for him as well. I think he’s a great competitor, I think he’s very, very tough, but the wisdom that I’ve acquired in this last year alone kind of trumps everything he has done. No pun intended,” Usman said (h/t SportsKeeda).

Who do you think wins this Saturday’s UFC 268 main event rematch between UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman and his archrival Colby Covington?

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