Former UFC champ Tyron Woodley working with Jorge Masvidal to prepare for Colby Covington

Tyron Woodley found the perfect man to help him prepare for his upcoming fight with Colby Covington.

Woodley (19-5-1 MMA, 9-4-1 UFC) faces Covington in the UFC’s Sept. 19 main event, which takes place at the UFC Apex in Las Vegas. Jorge Masvidal has been assisting him ahead of the big fight.

It’s well-documented that both Masvidal (35-14 MMA, 14-8 UFC) and Woodley have fallen out with their former American Top Team teammate Covington (15-2 MMA, 9-2 UFC), and Masvidal has decided to spend time in St. Louis to help Woodley train.

“I started training with him. He came out – he had such a good time,” Woodley told ESPN. “He said, ‘You know what? I’m going home for a day or two, and I’m coming back out.’ And he came back out and we just – iron sharpening iron. But what people don’t know about me and Jorge, I trained with Jorge five years straight before when I first joined ATT and he was at ATT. We trained hell on wheels.”

Woodley credits Masvidal for motivating him and helping him get his head straight as he enters his grudge match with Covington. Both Woodley and Masvidal saw recent career resurgences. Woodley captured the UFC welterweight title in 2016, and Masvidal shot to superstardom after a remarkable 2019.

Although Woodley has lost two in a row, he knows how high the stakes are in the Covington fight, which has been years in the making. A lot has been said between the two welterweights, and the bad blood continued to brew even after Woodley lost his title.

Woodley, who branched out to different gyms including Roufusport in Milwaukee, hasn’t trained with Masvidal for a while, but remained friends with him.

“I’ve always been American Top Team, and I’ve always supported Jorge,” Woodley said. “If you go back and look at the last two or three years, you’ll see me giving Jorge credit and being happy for him genuinely that he’s finally making the money. So when he did that and reached out, I said, ‘Hell yeah, let’s get him in.’ He’s holding me accountable. He’d be like, ‘Can’t do that – you’ve got to do this … tonight we’re doing this … let’s go get in the sauna … how much you weigh?’ We both came from the gutter, when you really think about it, and we both found a way to stick with it.

“We’ve had a long career because of our IQ and because we put ourselves in uncomfortable situations in training so that we can thrive in the octagon, and I want to see him do well. I want to see him continue to make the money, do what he wants to do, and he wants to see me back on top.”

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