mma / News

Belal Muhammad Enjoys Being the Underdog, Talks Colby Covington’s Criticism of The UFC

January 11, 2019 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas
Belal Muhammed

Belal Muhammad spoke with MMAjunkie for a new interview ahead of his fight with Geoff Neal at UFC on ESPN+ 1. Highlights are below:

On Chad Laprise naming his as an ‘established veteran’ he’d like to fight: “I’m like, ‘What the hell, I’m a veteran now? It was just funny when he said that.”

On when he thinks he moved behind the prospect stage: “When I first got into the UFC I was like, “One person I don’t want to fight is Tim Means. Just because he’s such a dangerous fighter, man. I have always watched him coming up and I just always loved his elusive style, he’s just so nasty with his elbows and stuff, you’re like, ‘Damn, what would I think about if I fought him?’…After I was able to stand up with a dude that I always saw, ‘Damn, he’s a monster standing up, Tim Means is so good.’ And I was able to beat him standing up. I felt like at that point like, ‘All right, now I know I belong, time to make my move up that ladder.”

On being the underdog against Neal: “I love being the underdog, man. When people don’t believe in me, or think that I’m going to go in there and just going to lose, that’s when I fight at my best. That’s why I wanted to take this fight. I’m on a four-fight winning streak, I could have fought someone ranked, or somebody up there, but I know this guy is a tough guy. He’s a tough up-and-comer that they think is going to be the next star. So I’m going to go in there, beat him, kill that train and then get my ranked opponent.”

On the welterweight division: “That division is really good, but (it’s) so crazy that a lot of these guys are afraid to fight each other. They’re on long winning streaks, because no one wants to fight each other. Like, usually guys on winning streaks should be fighting each other, to see who’s better. Like, same thing with Colby Covington, everybody’s all upset that he didn’t get the title shot over Usman. But he was saying, ‘I was healthy in March, I was healthy for November, but Woodley was hurt.’ I’m like, If you’re a so-called champ, like you say you are, then why didn’t you fight Usman on that other card, the Anaheim card (UFC 233)? You could have picked that fight and fought him … Don’t talk about it, be about it.”