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Woodley Opens as Favorite vs Covington for Welterweight Championship

Woodley vs Covington Betting Odds

A date hasn’t been picked yet for champion Tyron “The Chosen One” Woodley to unify his welterweight title against interim champion Colby “Chaos” Covington. However, the odds are out and the current champ opened at -185 with the challenger coming back at +150. Even though we don’t know when or where this fight is going to take place, there has been plenty of animosity between the fighters already.

Shark Bites
  • Colby Covington is averaging 122.4 strikes over his last five fights.
  • Tyron Woodley has a 94 percent takedown defense.
  • Both fighters combined have gone to a decision in eight of their last nine fights.

The Tale of the Tape

Let’s start with the champ. Woodley will be entering the cage for the first time in over a year, having beaten Demian Maia at UFC 214 on July 29, 2017. The Chosen One has taken this time off due to shoulder surgery from a torn labrum in that last bout. Woodley possesses freakish knockout power. He began his UFC career 6-2 with five of those victories coming by way of KO/TKO, including finishing Robbie Lawlor at UFC 201 to claim the UFC welterweight belt. As champ, Woodley defended his belt three times, all ending in a decision. Not only does the titleholder have ridiculous power, but he also has tremendous takedown defense, stuffing 94 percent of attempts. This was on display in Woodley’s last scrap with Maia, as the champ shook off all 21 attempts by Maia, all with a torn labrum. The Chosen One is 5-0-1 over his last six fights.

Covington has his sights set on being the undisputed UFC welterweight champion after earning the interim belt against Rafael dos Anjos at UFC 225 on June 9, 2018. Chaos put some doubters to bed with his outstanding output and the endless pressure he showed in that bout. The interim champ climbed the rankings quickly, which many believed was an effect from him running his mouth, but the stats back up his rise. Covington is on a six-fight winning streak and has averaged 122.4 strikes over his last five fights. Combined with a ridiculously high output, he also has secured 38 takedowns over his six-fight winning streak, averaging 5.63 takedowns per 15 minutes over his UFC career. It should be noted that Covington didn’t take Demian Maia down in their UFC Fight Night 119 in Sao Paulo clash due to the high level of danger Maia presents on the mat. Covington has been the favorite in all of his fights in the UFC, but at Bovada he opened as a +150 underdog.

Tensions Between the Two

For the most part, the reigning champ has been fairly quiet when Covington’s name has been brought up. But that all changed when Chaos claimed the interim belt. Woodley opened up about inviting Covington to American Top Team in preparation for the champ’s bout with Rory MacDonald in 2014. The Chosen One claimed in a recent episode of The MMA Hour that Chaos was lazy and a terrible training partner. He also said that after he beats Covington that he wants the interim champ to be kicked off the ATT team. Viewers will need to have their popcorn ready when these former teammates collide later this year, as this scrap will surely be a barnburner.

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