Colby Covington facing ‘serious’ health concerns ahead of UFC 296 after reported ‘brain injury’ during MMA absence
Colby Covington has not competed since March 2022.
“Chaos” may have been holding out for a potential welterweight title shot. Or perhaps the former interim 170-pound champion was suffering from brain damage after getting sucker punched by Jorge Masvidal in the streets of Miami.
“There’s an X-factor,” longtime boxing trainer Teddy Atlas said on YouTube (transcribed by MMA News). “The one thing that I don’t know if anyone will touch on or think about is that Covington’s been gone from the ring for a year and nine months. Something happened during that (time).”
According to the charges levied against Masvidal, it was a bonafide brain injury.
Covington defeated Masvidal at UFC 272, but “Gamebred” was not ready to let go of their rivalry until scoring his payback for his former best friend’s pre-fight trash talk. That led to a smashed Rolex, a chipped tooth, a perhaps even a broken brain.
That may explain this awful behavior.
“Masvidal, in the street, went up without Covington seeing him and hit him with a sneak punch that really hurt Covington to the point that it was reported he had a brain injury,” Atlas continued. “That’s serious, that’s significant. He has not been in the ring since that. Is it gonna be the same Covington? We don’t know, and that concerns me. Will he have the same chin? At the end of the day, I’m gonna go with Edwards. I know what he’s gonna be.”
Covington will make his long-awaited return to the Octagon to battle reigning welterweight champion Leon Edwards atop the UFC 296 pay-per-view (PPV) event, which takes place this Sat. night (Dec. 16, 2023) from inside T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Bookies have “Chaos” as the +140 underdog.
“At the end of the day, both guys like to strike,” Atlas said. “Covington makes more mistakes than Edwards does because he takes more risks than Edwards does. I think that’s where Edwards has the edge. He’s gonna have to be able to get through the storm early and be able to do something to slow down Covington a little bit; punch at the right distance.”
Well find out tomorrow night in “Sin City.”
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CHAMPIONSHIP DOUBLE DIP! Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns home to Las Vegas, Nevada, on Sat., Dec. 16, 2023, for its final pay-per-view (PPV) event of the year. In the ESPN+-streamed PPV main event, reigning Welterweight roost-ruler, Leon Edwards, will lock horns with former 170-pound interim kingpin, Colby Covington. In UFC 296’s co-main event, Alexandre Pantoja will put his Flyweight title on the line against Brandon Royval, who earned a rematch with “The Cannibal” after winning three consecutive bouts. UFC 296 will also feature the returns of Paddy Pimblett, Shavkat Rakhmonov, Bryce Mitchell and so much more!
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