Tyron Woodley is backing Jorge Masvidal to come out on top against Colby Covington.
Masvidal and Covington collide in a long-awaited welterweight grudge match headlining the upcoming UFC 272 pay-per-view event on March 5.
For many observers as well as oddsmakers, Covington is the favorite, as many believe his volume and wrestling will be more than enough to get the victory over Masvidal.
Others, however, believe Masvidal has the striking and power to keep Covington at bay and potentially finish him.
Woodley — who knows both Covington and Masvidal pretty well — is with the latter as he believes “Gamebred” can come out on top if he remains focused on the task at hand.
“Masvidal just needs to … keep his emotions and not turn it into where he just wants to fight him and hurt him and try to embarrass him – just really use what he does best,” Woodley told MMA Junkie. “He has the best boxing, I feel like, in MMA right now. I feel like his hand speed is crazy. His ability to work the body is nuts. Colby Covington does not like body shots. I knew it. Why I didn’t go there more often, I don’t know.
“Masvidal knows it. He gave me some tips on it. I think he’s just going to work him to the body.”
Tyron Woodley: Masvidal Will Always Be Big Brother
In the end, Woodley believes Masvidal will always remain the big brother to Covington and that it will be hard for the latter to overcome him in an MMA fight.
Especially as Woodley claims they barely trained together at the highest level.
“I feel like Masvidal is going to win, because Masvidal is always big brother. Once you have big brother syndrome over someone, I feel like you can’t really shake that unless you have a big breakout moment and you can consistently keep up,” Woodley added. “There’s a couple of guys that I used to wrestle and they would always beat me. Then I would beat them one time and I just f*cking got a little cocky and I just started beating them consecutively. That don’t happen very often.
“I don’t think Colby had enough time fighting at the highest level in the gym with Masvidal to have had that moment. Whenever he started getting to the point where he started talking enough to get himself in position, he had to leave the gym. They weren’t even training together anymore. So I don’t think he had a large enough victory in the gym.”
There’s only a few weeks until we get to see if Woodley is correct.