At UFC 268 the main event is a rematch Kamaru Usman vs Colby Covington for the UFC Welterweight Championship.
The first fight between the two was a tight affair which ended in a TKO victory for Usman in the fifth round. Covington protested the result to the referee Marc Goddard who he blames for the lost. Heading into the final round one judge had Covington winning 39–37, another had it tied at 38–38, and the other had it 39–37 in favor of Usman.
During the fight Usman was able to break Covington’s jaw in the third round but was able to continue into the fifth where he was dropped twice and when then stopped. Covington believed that Usman called for fake groin shots and eye pokes throughout the fight which meant the momentum of the fight changed in favour of the Nigerian Nightmare.
Usman since then has defeated Gilbert Burns and Jorge Masvidal twice and has risen to the number one ranking in the Men UFC Pound-for-Pound rankings, and many now believe he is the greatest Welterweight of all time in the UFC. Usman has been victorious in his last 18 fights and has been the UFC Welterweight champions since March 2019 where he defeated Tyron Woodley.
Since his defeat to Usman at UFC 245 Covington left the American Top Team and started getting trained by Cesar Carneiro as his head coach, Daniel Valverde as his wrestling coach and Johnathan Lopez as his strength and conditioning coach. Covington believes these changes his has made to his training team will be huge for the rematch as he said on BT Sport “Colby Covington 2.0 is coming this Saturday night”.
Colby Covington has fought for over a year where he defeated by the former UFC Welterweight Champion Tyron Woodley thanks to a TKO after Woodley sustained a serious rib injury.
Since the last fight Usman has also made a change in his team as Trevor Witman became his head coach replacing Henri Hooft. Since the change to Witman Usman has won his last two fights with devastating knock outs against Burns and Masvidal.
Going into the fight it is expected that Covington will try and set the pace of the fight which he usually does which was very successful against fighters like Colby Covington, Rafael dos Anjos and Diego Maia. However in the last fight against Usman he wasn’t able to set the pace in the fight. When on the feet Covington will need to try and set the pace and constantly get within range of Usman who has the considerable size advantage over Covington.
Both fighter have very good takedown defence as Usman has never been taken down in the UFC in 20 attempts where Covington has been taken down six times in his UFC career in 24 and has spent 3 and a half minutes on his back. It can be a huge psychological victory for Covington if he can take down Usman early on in the fight.
Going into the fight Usman will be the favourite to retain his UFC title however Covington will definitely provide a stern test for Usman if the previous fight has anything to go off. However, Covington’s ring rust might cause a problem for him in his fight.