In the electrifying world of MMA, where bravado and larger-than-life personas often take center stage, Colby Covington has emerged as a controversial figure, masterfully blending WWE-style theatrics with his in-cage prowess. However, a recent revelation by former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping has added a layer of intrigue to the narrative surrounding Covington, suggesting that the bombastic persona portrayed on camera might be just that – a persona.
Covington, known by his moniker “Chaos,” deliberately embraced a trash-talking, polarizing persona reminiscent of professional wrestling in 2017. This strategic decision catapulted him into the spotlight, making him a magnet for both adoration and contempt. While his fights may not always be the most thrilling, his ability to generate buzz and stir emotions has undeniably made him a household name in the MMA community.
However, Bisping, in a recent episode of the Believe You Me podcast, peeled back the layers of Covington’s public image, revealing a side of the fighter that stands in stark contrast to the brash and confrontational character he portrays in the media.
According to Bisping, who has engaged in verbal sparring with Covington in the past, encounters outside the camera’s glare exposed a different facet of the fighter. “I didn’t believe that he was putting on a WWE-esque character until I had some run-ins with him when there were no cameras around,” Bisping explained. “I was blown away by how humble, how polite, and what just generally a nice human being he was.”
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Bisping’s narrative challenges the widely held belief that Covington’s persona is a constant, an unwavering extension of his true self. The former champion narrated instances where Covington, away from the cameras, exhibited humility, politeness, and kindness – qualities that sharply contrast with the bombastic character he projects during interviews and fight promotions.
“He throws on the MAGA hat and he is a big Trump supporter, that is not an act, but he is coming at everyone, he is taking no prisoners, he is pulling no punches. You know what I am saying, but you bump into the guy walking down the street, and he is so nice. ‘Yes sir, no sir!’, helping people out, holding doors, taking time with fans and all the rest of it,” Bisping emphasized.
This revelation raises questions about the nature of sports personas and the fine line between entertainment and authenticity in the fight game. Covington’s ability to seamlessly switch between his on-screen character and his off-camera demeanor adds an intriguing layer to the ongoing debate surrounding the performative aspects of professional sports.
It is not just Bisping who has experienced this duality in Covington’s personality. Anthony Smith and podcast guest Adam Catterall shared similar stories of encounters with the controversial fighter, recounting instances where he displayed a level of courtesy and amiability that sharply contrasts with his public image.
As the controversy surrounding Covington deepens, the MMA community is left to ponder the implications of such dual personas in the sport. Is Covington’s case an isolated incident, or does it shed light on a broader phenomenon within the realm of combat sports? Only time will tell as fans eagerly await the next chapter in the unpredictable saga of Colby Covington – both the persona and the man behind the mask.