Colby Covington claims Reebok tried to get him fired after controversial comments

Colby Covington is staring down his third UFC title shot – despite of an inactive streak and his last win coming in against Masvidal more than a year ago.

Dana White confirmed UFC was handing Covington a title shot when he weight in as a back up for Leon Edwards vs Usman rematch.

Many UFC fans reacted negatively to the revelations and Leon Edwards even questioned the legitimacy of a Covington title shot.

But Covington is a veteran of the sport. And one that had to learn a painful lesson in 2017. Ahead of clash against Demian Maia, Covington was told by his manager that the UFC planned to cut him either way because he failed to make a name for himself despite of an impressive record.

Covington had a single loss in MMA – years ago. At this point Covington knew he had nothing to lose.

Covington’s response to the threat of release was nothing short of remarkable. In his bout against Maia, he emerged victorious on Brazilian soil, and it was during his in cage interview that he unleashed a newfound persona.

Covington’s controversial remarks about Brazil and its people ignited a firestorm of criticism and backlash. The incident marked a turning point in his career, capturing the attention of the UFC and its fans.

“I was ranked no.6 in the world, ‘We’re not re-signing you. We don’t like your character. We don’t like your fighting style.’

“I’m getting paid $30,000 to go fight the no.2 guy in the world. After you pay taxes and pay your coaches, you’re really going to get like, $5000 or $10,000.”

“So I go out there and I beat him up and leave him in a pool of blood in Sao Paulo, Brazil, his home city, and I shoot this promo on the Brazilians and I say, ‘You guys are all a bunch of filthy animals and Brazil you’re a dump.’”

“I wasn’t supposed to have my job, but that promo goes so viral on the internet, that the UFC’s like, ‘We have to keep him. We have to re-sign him because that promo is so big.’ So that’s what saved my career and that was the turning point of my career and the rest has been history.” – Covington explained back in the day.

This was only the beginning. Covington would go on to make a slew of controversial remarks including his commentary on BLM.

Covington asked Nigerian born Kamaru Usman if he uses “smoke signals” to communicate with his “little tribe.” He also accused Tyron Woodley of “standing up for lifelong criminals” in his support for the Black Lives Matter movement.

At this point a number of UFC stars and Reebok objected to Covington’s comments.

“Reebok is the uniform provider for the UFC, however we do not sponsor Colby Covington,” Reebok’s statement read. “We do not agree with the sentiments he expressed, and stand firm in our belief that Black lives matter. We stand with athletes and communities who are fighting for change.”

Reebok ended a partnership with the UFC just a year later – in 2021.

Covington recently guested on the Tim Pool podcast and revealed that Reebok actually wanted him fired over the rant.

“We had Reebok was sponsoring the UFC and they didn’t sponsor me individually, they just sponsored the company. After one of my fights, they tried to retract some of my statements, saying ‘Oh, we don’t stand for what Colby Covington believes. We’re asking him to get fired from the UFC.’ Dana [White] was just like laughing.”