Colby Covington has heaped praise on UFC president Dana White for defending fighters right to free speech in the aftermath of UFC Vegas 11.

Covington has found himself in hot water for comments made before and after beating Tyron Woodley in Las Vegas on September 19. Most notable was a remark he made while involved in a heated debate with welterweight champion Kamaru Usman on live TV.

During the exchange, Covington was heard bragging about receiving a call from President Donald Trump after his latest win before making what many believed to be a racist comment about Usman.

“Who did you get a call from? Did you get a call from, freaking, your little tribe? Did they give you some smoke signals for you?” Covington shouted. “You’re a joke, Marty Fakenewsman!”

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The UFC boss has since come out and said he doesn’t believe Covington made any comments that could be considered racist. He also said he will not “muzzle” Covington or any other fighter moving forward.

Speaking to Submission Radio Covington was full of compliments for White who he has not always been on the most friendly of terms with.

“The backlash was not warranted. I gotta say big respect to Dana White for not bowing to the woke mob. Dana White is the only commissioner that doesn’t try and force an agenda down your throat,” Covington said.

“Like, Basketball, NFL, they are trying to force a one-sided agenda down your throat – the woke mob. They want to force their politics down your throat and you have to accept it and if you don’t we’re not gonna pay you. Dana White is not like that. He’s not trying to limit my free speech. This is America. We have freedoms in America. He’s not telling me what I should and shouldn’t do and he’s OK with which way I wanna go.

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“That’s what I love most about Dana White and the UFC as a whole because they don’t limit their fighters freedom of speech and they don’t take away our rights. They let us be who we wanna be. There’s nothing that I said that was racist and there’s nothing that I did that was racist. End of story. Next question.”

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A lifelong fight fan from Liverpool, England who has been covering mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing for several years. Follow @JordanEllisUK on Twitter for all the latest fight news, views, interviews and live event coverage.