Dana White indicates Colby Covington is "next"
Personally I think that Covington should actually be in the main event this weekend, not Masvidal, especially when you consider that more time has passed since Covington fought now champion Usman. The reasoning behind the rematch being given to Masvidal is based on the fact that the last time the two met, Masvidal was called up with short notice, a point that Jorge has brought up time and time again with his biggest critic being Colby Covington, who was a previous teammate and friend to Masvidal.
The Covington Usman match was one of the best that I have ever seen and it really looked like Covington had a real shot of taking the belt, the judges scorecards indicated that he had a shot also with one of the judges having him up 3-1 by the 5th round.
Of course there was also another judge that had Usman up by the same amount.
Covington got rocked late in the 5th and the fight was called off, which I, Covington himself, and most of the MMA world thought was too early of a stoppage and that the fight should have been allowed to continue. Of course it likely still would have went to Usman, but you never can tell with a knockout artist like Colby. The same thing could have happened in reverse.
Masvidal has a lot to prove this weekend because he is good on a microphone, has a couple of wins in the bag that were impressive but at the same time I don't think he deserves this bout despite his recent streak. If Usman works the guy over, it could be very bad for the holder of the BMF belt, which I have said on many occasions is the stupidest belt ever conceived outside of WWE.
In a recent interview, Dana White indicated that Covington will almost certainly be the next person to get a chance at the welterweight title. Of course, this was just an interview so it is nothing official, but come on man, who else deserves it more?
Usman has said that he is not interested in fighting Covington again but in the world of fighting, especially one that we can pretend is controlled by many different people (it isn't, it's completely Dana White's call) that if White wants a fight, that fight is going to happen.
I really don't think that Masvidal has much of a chance at UFC 261 and Vegas agrees with me since Usman is a -450 favorite, but it would be really really interesting if he pulled off a miracle and somehow won because then he would be placed against a former friend and training partner. I don't know what caused their falling out, but they have very little in the way of nice things to say about one another these days.
They were training partners, friends, and even roommates at one point and now they hate eachother... or at least that is how it appears. There is a lot of speculation out there that the beef is all staged just to get more attention for the both of them and make their respective payouts better and if that is the case, both of them have maintained kayfabe perfectly (look up "kayfabe" if you are unfamiliar with that term, it has an interesting history.)
I'm about as excited as I have ever been for this upcoming UFC and I think that the rest of the MMA world is as well. But regardless of what happens in the main event I think that Covington certainly deserves the next crack at the title and it was good to hear the President of UFC indicate that he feels the same way.