When Gilbert Burns tested positive for COVID-19, an out pour of fans reached out to give well wishes. Fight fans also wondered if Kamaru Usman would be re-booked with a new opponent. Of course, his short notice adversary would later become Jorge Masvidal. However, MMA enthusiasts were hoping that Kamaru would face Colby Covington in a rematch. As probable as the rematch seemed, UFC President Dana White made it known that Covington was never considered for the title fight opportunity.
By now, MMA fans know that a Welterweight title fight between Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal has been made offical. This was due to a positive COVID-19 test from Gilbert Burns that forced him out of his title fight. After hours of speculation, both fighters have agreed to throw down at UFC 251 on Fight Island. But, before the news was official, fans thought Colby Covington would get the nod. Especially after he made himself available for the match.
Dana White Only Considered Jorge Masvidal, Never Colby
Dana White spoke with TMZ Sports about making the short notice fight. During the conversation, he was adamant that Masvidal was the only fighter he spoke to about filling in.
“We were always talking to (Jorge) Masvidal. There was never a situation during the negotiations, if you will, that we didn’t think that Masvidal was going to take the fight,” said Dana.
The Covington Effect
Just like the rest of MMA Twitter, Dana sees everything on the internet. White’s phrasing of his words essentially shut down all rumors that Colby Covington was in the running to replace Gilbert Burns. Regardless of Colby’s inability to step in for the fight, he still has a long standing beef with both fighters.
Jorge Masvidal already stated that if he wins the Welterweight title, he would like to defend it against Nate Diaz. Usman, on the other hand, has already defeated Colby via TKO at UFC 245. Although Covington thinks Usman will beat Jorge, he’ll have to wait longer to be considered by Dana White.