With welterweight champion Tyron Woodley on the sidelines, the 170-pound division could move on with an interim title match very soon.
And it may contain two very high-profile contenders.
A report surfaced earlier today from BJ Penn’s Chris Taylor detailing that multiple sources have confirmed to him a Rafael dos Anjos vs. Colby Covington interim title fight is in the works for May 12’s UFC 224 from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
Although not finalized, it is reportedly expected to be soon:
Breaking! According to multiple sources close to the situation, the UFC is targeting an interim welterweight title fight between Rafael dos Anjos and Colby Covington for #UFC224 on May 12 in Rio. Nothing is official yet, but it sounds like the deal could be finalized soon. #UFC
— Chris Taylor (@CTaylor_96) March 22, 2018
Dos Anjos has appeared reinvented at welterweight after ditching the draining weight cut at his former home of 155 pounds, a division where he became the UFC champion but ultimately decided to move up following two consecutive losses to Eddie Alvarez and Tony Ferguson.
He’s been on a tear ever since, most recently taking out former 170-pound champion Robbie Lawler after wins against Neil Magny and Tarec Saffiedine.
Covington, on the other hand, has become MMA’s public enemy number one after calling out a large portion of the UFC roster whether they fight at 170 or not.
The brash, Brazil-blasting contender has won five straight fights in a row with his most recent a unanimous decision over Brazilian fan favorite Demian Maia last October, a fight after which he called the Sao Paulo crowd “filthy animals” and had to be escorted out of the stadium by security.
Another trip to the hostile territory is apparently in the works for Covington, and you can’t deny his gall for going back to Brazil.
UFC 224 is currently headlined by a women’s bantamweight title fight between Amanda Nunes and Raquel Pennington.