Everyone knows that if Tyron Woodley was fighting Colby Covington next, the lead-up to the bout would feature plenty of trash talk and then some. But, it looks like we’re still going to see extensive verbal warfare, as Woodley’s bout with Kamaru Usman approaches.
Usman has been booked to fight the welterweight champ at UFC 235, March 2nd in Las Vegas, and yesterday the promotion held a pre-fight presser. Usman traded a lot of verbal shots with Woodley’s buddy and teammate, Ben Askren, but he also got into it with the champ.
Case in point, here’s one of the exchanges they had after Woodley questioned the punching power of Usman (quotes via MMA Fighting):
“I’m top-three for the most knockdowns in welterweight history, and I think I have the fastest KO, flat-out,” Woodley said. “How many people have you knocked out in your career?”
“Same as you, six,” said Usman.
“No, don’t fool yourself, brother,” responded Woodley. “How many people’s consciousness have you stolen? You’ve stolen none. Nice try. Bruh, I’m your mentor. You’re talking back to your mentor right now.”
“Hey, it don’t matter,” Usman replied. “You could feel like a big brother all you want, but at some point big brothers gotta get their ass whooped too. … March 2nd, we’re going to see. When you hear ‘and new,’ you’re going to feel real special when you’re walking backstage.”
Now, if you’re wondering, Usman is correct in that both he and Woodley have each recorded six KO or TKO wins (Woodley officially has seven, but one of them was his TKO win over Carlos Condit, which was due to a leg injury).
Now, if we’re talking UFC runs, Usman has only scored one KO since he arrived in the promotion, and that was against Sergio Moraes in 2017. Woodley’s fists, on the other hand, have taken out Robbie Lawler, Jay Hieron, Josh Koscheck, and Dong Hyun Kim in the Octagon.
All this aside, many would likely argue that Usman could be Woodley’s toughest test to date, since he has a top tier wrestling game like the champ. We shall see at UFC 235.
Here is the line-up for the upcoming, March 2nd event.
UFC Light Heavyweight Championship
Jon Jones (c) vs. Anthony Smith
UFC Welterweight Championship
Tyron Woodley (c) vs. Kamaru Usman
Welterweight: Robbie Lawler vs. Ben Askren
Strawweight: Tecia Torres vs. Weili Zhang
Welterweight: Diego Sanchez vs. Mickey Gall
Female Bantamweight: Gina Mazany vs. Macy Chiasson
Female Bantamweight: Holly Holm vs. Aspen Ladd
Featherweight: Jeremy Stephens vs. Zabit Magomedsharipov
Light Heavyweight: Ovince Saint Preux vs. Misha Cirkunov
Bantamweight: Cody Garbrandt vs. Pedro Munhoz
Bantamweight: Thomas Almeida vs. Marlon Vera