It’s safe to say Anthony Smith and Colby Covington will never be the best of friends.
However, Covington is known to make a lot of enemies. So it isn’t that odd to think Smith is among the ranks of fighters who can’t stand him. But why, exactly? Some may claim it’s Covington’s continual barbs toward Smith’s upcoming opponent.
While this could be construed as an advantage for Smith, as it would potentially get under his opponent’s skin, he wasn’t having it. So when Covington made a typical quip about how Jones should “snort a few picograms,” Smith was quick to let him know the jokes were played out.
To be fair, Jones and Covington do have a long history. The two roomed together during their college wrestling days, and Covington has been critical of Jones long before his fight with Smith was announced. At one point, he was even warned by commentator Joe Rogan on how dangerous it was to talk about a man like Jones. Covington responded by threatening to slap Rogan, before “letting him off the hook.”
Now Smith has revealed that it wasn’t just Covington’s willingness to get in the middle of his fight, at least verbally. Covington had thrown some shade at Smith when campaigning for a title shot of his own.
It started back when Covington was seeking a title shot, after missing an opportunity because of an apparent sinus surgery. He justified his claim to the shot by saying that even Smith was getting a shot. Unsurprisingly, that didn’t sit well with the man known as “Lionheart.”
Smith said: “Like, ‘Well, Anthony Smith got one and he’s a piece of sh*t, so why can’t I get one?’ And I just, it’s the same with the Luke Rockhold thing. Like, I just hate people that are just assholes for no reason.”
Rockhold was another fighter who brought up Smith’s name, perhaps to bolster his own claim at a title shot. However, it is a situation where Smith knows he must stick up for himself and his own contender status. Admittedly, Smith does have quite a few losses in his career. But since moving up to light heavyweight, he’s scored wins over two former world champions and a former world title contender.
Smith also criticized Covington’s behavior about owning up to his talk. He recalled a story where Covington came into a gym he was working out at. He said he understood why Covington would try to avoid fighters, as he’d talked trash about a lot of them, but described his behavior as “skittish.”
Covington has had issues when confronted for his barbs in the past. He didn’t respond when Kamaru Usman confronted him over social media trash talk, and even called the police when Fabricio Werdum threw a boomerang at him in Australia.
Smith and Covington are two weight classes apart, so there’s no possibility of a fight – at least not one inside the Octagon.