Former UFC welterweight champion Tyron Woodley has identified the toughest opponent he’s ever faced in mixed martial arts competition.
While Woodley has shared the cage with fighters like Colby Covington, Gilbert Burns, Kamaru Usman, Darren Till, Demian Maia, Stephen Thompson, Robbie Lawler, Rory MacDonald, Carlos Condit, Josh Koscheck and Nate Marquardt, he says his toughest foe to date was American Top Team veteran Nathan Coy.
Woodley met Coy in his fifth pro fight, under the Strikeforce banner, way back in 2010. He won the fight by decision, but from the sounds of it, it’s a fight he’ll never forget.
“The toughest opponent I’ve ever fought was a dude named Nathan Coy,” Woodley told Helen Yee recently (via Essentially Sports). “He was actually a teammate of mine at American Top Team. The other guys I fought, I just did not perform, or I backed up too much. Or [Nate] Marquardt, I was relaxed for one second too long on the cage and he threw me the elbow buffet.
“But Nathan Coy, I was there,” Woodley continued. “And I was a 100 percent and I was going hard and he was going hard. And I threw up so bad after this fight. Oh my God it was so hard…. And it was such a close fight. I barely won it, but I was fighting as hard as I could and he was fighting as hard as he could. And he’s the only one that I’ve ever fought at the level that matched me. Anyone else I fought at 50% or more, I knocked out or beat or snapped them. When people are beating me, I am not remotely where I am supposed to be at.”
Tyron Woodley has lost his last three fights to Covington, Burns and Usman. He’ll look to get back to winning ways at UFC 260, when he takes on rising welterweight contender Vicente Luque.