Colby Covington has revealed he was partying with Donald Trump just days before learning he could be fighting for the welterweight title.
The former interim welterweight champion shocked MMA fans when he turned up and weighed in as the back-up fighter for the UFC 286 main event.
Unfortunately, for ‘Chaos’ he wasn’t needed as Leon Edwards and Kamaru Usman made weight ahead of their fight at the O2 Arena on Saturday night.
Covington attended the UFC’s first UK pay-per-view show since Michael Bisping defended his middleweight title against Dan Henderson in Manchester seven years ago.
Before heading to his cageside seat to a huge ovation from the British fight fans, the 35-year-old spoke with assembled media members backstage and revealed how he came to be involved with UFC 286.
Covington said: “Hunter Campbell and Dana White called me about three weeks ago and they were like, ‘Hey, Colby, just stay ready in case anything happens.
“‘You don’t know, someone could slip on a banana peel, someone could get injured, someone could miss weight. Just stay ready in case anything happens.’
“I hadn’t heard anything [until] Tuesday night. Hunter Campbell calls me and says, ‘Hey, Colby, I need you to come to weigh in and be the back-up fighter in London.
“I got to London on Thursday morning and weighed 188lbs. I had 18lbs to lose in one day. Did you hear me cry? Did you hear me make excuses? No. I got to work like the ultimate professional I am, and I made the weight.”
Covington claims he doesn’t usually have to cut so much weight to make 170lbs but was a bit heavy after attending a party with the 46th US President.
He added: “Usually, it’s about 13, 14, 15lbs max but I was with Donald Trump last week.
“We were at a birthday party at Donald Trump’s and we were just kind of eating. I wasn’t really thinking that I was going to be the back-up fighter, I hadn’t heard anything from the UFC.
“So, I was like, ‘I’m going to splurge a little bit. I’m going to eat and have this buffet-style food and not really worry about it. Hopefully, I’ll get the [UFC 286 main event] winner this summer.’”
Covington travelling across the pond at a moment’s notice to make weight for a fight he was unlikley to get impressed Dana White.
The UFC president revealed during his post-fight press conference that Covington is next in line for a title shot even though Edwards hopes to face the winner of Gilbert Burns vs Jorge Masvidal after his second win over Usman.
Covington hasn’t fought since picking up a lopsided decision win over his former friend turned bitter rival ‘Gambred’ at UFC 272 in March 2022.
Masvidal allegedly decided to take his beef with Covington to the streets of Miami after their fight and sucker punched his welterweight rival several times causing a fractured tooth.
The BMF titleholder was arrested and subsequently charged with aggravated battery and hit with a restraining order, which requires him to stay at least 25 feet away from Covington, 500 feet away from his rival’s residence, and forbids him from contacting Covington in any way before the matter is addressed in court.