At the heart of Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) shows, there’s an attendee whose presence frequently draws attention – former President Donald Trump. He was amongst the audience at UFC 295 hosted in the iconic Madison Square Garden just a month ago, and recently joined another star-studded crowd in Las Vegas for UFC 296.
Witnessing this legendary combat sport, Trump has made his mark, making this visit his fourth engagement at a UFC pay-per-view event throughout this year alone. Among these include the thrilling incidents at UFC 287 that took place in Miami and UFC 290 held again in the city of Las Vegas.
Staying true to his affinity for the sport and the drama that surrounds it, Trump’s grand entrance did not disappoint. Accompanying him on the grand walkway into the event were the widely recognized UFC president Dana White, rock sensation Kid Rock, and multi-talented actor Mario Lopez.
Ensuring an eventful night was the fiercely competitive Colby Covington, a well-respected figure in MMA circles and a known supporter of Trump. Covington was primed for the main event, readying himself for a crucial showdown against Leon Edwards for the prestigious welterweight title, despite being seen as the underdog in this matchup.
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As part of his usual flair, Covington promised that Trump would be the one strapping the championship belt around his waist should he emerge victorious in the bout. The anticipation bubbled over during the UFC 296 press conference where he made this statement, held at the illustrious MGM Grand Garden Arena, adding to the excitement of December 14, 2023, in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Trump’s past engagements with UFC have shown him being supportive of several fighters. One such fighter Trump has shown camaraderie with is Jorge Masvidal. His attendance at UFC 287 was in part spurred by his relationship with Masvidal.
Unfortunately, Masvidal’s bout during that event didn’t go as hoped, culminating in a loss to the skilled Gilbert Burns. In the aftermath of this fight, Masvidal chose to retire from the ring, effectively drawing a close on his illustrious fighting career.
For Covington, he steps into the octagon boasting a noteworthy professional win-loss tally of 17-3. His fight record for the last four matches stands even, at 2-2. The fighter suffered his two defeats at the hands of the formidable Usman.
His most recent performance displayed Covington’s fighting prowess, winning an undisputed unanimous decision against Masvidal, another mixed martial artist to whom Trump offered his backing. This win took place at the UFC 272 event held in March 2022.
Battle lines are drawn for his latest fight, this time against the talented, and currently the favorite, Leon Edwards. Edwards holds an impressive professional record of 21-3, proving his mettle in the combative world of UFC.
This anticipated bout comes after Edwards claimed a significant victory securing the UFC title from Usman during UFC 286. This triumph was especially memorable as it took place in March, in front of a home crowd in his native England, making it that much more special.