The interim lightweight champion just lately crossed paths with Covington when both were being exclusive friends at a rally in Nevada for President Donald Trump.
Gaethje even stood up coming to Covington in a photo together with his supervisor, Ali Abdelaziz, as nicely as UFC President Dana White and previous two-division champion Henry Cejudo. By all accounts, the fighters all stayed pretty qualified in direction of just about every other regardless of a risky background between Covington and Abdelaziz, including a actual physical altercation back again in 2018.
According to Gaethje, he bought a superior impression of Covington all through his interactions with him at the rally, but times afterwards, his viewpoint modified alternatively radically.
“The day right after that [rally], I was singing his praises mainly because of how skilled he was and how he held himself,” Gaethje defined through the UFC 254 media working day.
“But then he went onto do a bunch of interviews and I in all probability despise that man more than any person on earth Earth, other than like boy or girl pedophiles and murderers and points like that.”
Gaethje did not point out what opinions Covington especially produced that turned him so irate, but there is certainly a great deal to decide on from.
Both equally in advance of and just after his gain over Tyron Woodley just days right after that rally finished, Covington took goal at Abdelaziz, the Black Life Issue motion and he obtained into a risky trade with welterweight winner Kamaru Usman during a post-combat job interview.
What ever Covington stated it naturally got below Gaethje’s pores and skin as he blasted the former interim winner on Thursday.
“He is a coward – he’s a phony particular person,” Gaethje said. “He stands there and acts like this smooth-hearted dude, and then he gets driving the digital camera and he’s a complete coward and a pretend individual. I’ve by no means satisfied anyone as faux as Colby Covington.
“As a guy, I would appreciate to slap him proper throughout the facial area.”
And as significantly as his visual appeal at the Trump rally, Gaethje says outside the house of his impression about Covington in the aftermath of that occasion, he enjoyed the expertise.
“Trump is a big enthusiast of MMA,” Gaethje said. “He’s a purpose, probably not a substantial rationale, but he’s a reason that UFC is right here. He opened his doorways for us when we had no doorways to wander via.
“Meeting the President of the United States, it does not issue, it could have been [Barack] Obama, it could have been Trump, if I satisfy the President of the United States … I’m from a incredibly modest town, a extremely tiny position from difficult operating men and women, we respect the President of the United States as our chief. So it was seriously awesome. It was a genuinely neat possibility for me, for my family, for my town to get to have that working experience.”