Fertitta: Calling Fox ‘disgusting’ and ‘Buffalo Bill’ warrants review

Friday, April 12, 2013

The UFC has released a fighter Code of Conduct, following a series of incidents in which UFC fighters were sanctioned for innapropriate public staments. The most recent case was by former NFL player Matt “Meathead” Mitrione. who was so incensed at transgendered fighter Fallon Fox competing in the women’s division without informing her opponent that he called her “a lying, sick, sociopathic, disgusting freak,” among other virulent terms.

UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta and UFC COO Ike Lawrence Epstein spoke with Yahoo Sports’ Kevin Iole about Mitrione and the newly codified expectations.

“We’re not a bunch of police officers and we’re not sitting around all day trying to figure out ways to catch guys,” said Epstein. “We’re trying to run a business and these things can get in the way of that. And look, there are two sides to that.

“Matt Mitrione, he’s got a career, sponsors, things to take care of. We want to do what is right for the company, but if there is an opportunity to educate, to help him move on from this in a way that makes sense, we want to do that. We’re not police officers here. We’re trying, hopefully, to push guys in the right direction and make sure they’re being respectful and not being disrespectful to any race, gender, etc.”

Fertitta too offered input on the issue.

“Whatever your thoughts are on the whole transgender issue, I’ve listened to Mitrione’s comments and in my opinion, it came off as a bit mean-spirited, and is something I think warranted review,” said Fertitta. “Obviously, this is not the easiest issue and a lot of people are questioning both sides of this thing. A fair debate and discussion of the issue should be allowed.

“But when you call her disgusting, and Buffalo Bill, that’s another matter. It warrants review. I think it’s the same thing the NFL would look at and the same thing that any professional organization that is at the level we’re at would at least take a look at.”

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