Thursday, November 10, 2022

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UFC 279: Press conference abandoned, Dana White, Nate Diaz and Khamzat Chimaev brawl

The official press convention for UFC 279 descended into absolute mayhem and was rapidly cancelled after an ‘absolute s***present’ behind the scenes the place rival fighters brawled backstage.

The Las Vegas press convention began over half an hour late with no discover or clarification, till UFC boss Dana White opened the delayed press convention by declaring: “Absolute s***present again there.”

“There’s a lot of loopy s**t again there,” he added. The press convention lasted simply 5 minutes and featured solely two fighters earlier than White pulled the plug in chaotic scenes.

A battle broke out between rival camps backstage, which White later confirmed started between Khamzat Chimaev and Kevin Holland – the “catalysts” – and spiralled to incorporate different fighters.

Watch UFC 279: Chimaev v Diaz LIVE on Foremost Occasion obtainable on Kayo & Foxtel, Sunday 11 September from 12pm AEST. ORDER NOW >

“There have been a number of issues happening on the identical time. It wasn’t only one factor that erupted,” he mentioned. “As soon as it began erupting, it was a whole s***present.”

4 of the six fighters scheduled to look on-stage on the press convention (Kevin Holland, Daniel Rodriguez, Nate Diaz, Khamzat Chimaev, Tony Ferguson, and Li Jingliang) have been concerned within the brawl, the UFC chief confirmed.

White advised reporters afterwards: “It received very bodily, a number of fighters received concerned.”

Holland took to Twitter to assert he provided Chimaev a ‘free beard trim’: “Simply so everybody is aware of. I provided that clown a free beard trim. I don’t know wherever within the US that will provide that service free! I’m exact I promise I might not knick him. At your service similar to the lodge employees bro.”

“There was a lot of stuff earlier than we went out,” White mentioned, however added there have been MORE fights in the course of the press convention. “That was why I ended it.”

Requested if he was caught in the midst of it, White mentioned: “Yeah, I used to be simply attempting to inform all people: ‘What the f*** are you doing. What’s happening? Cease!’”

White confirmed no fighters have been injured, and added no fighters can be fined or penalised: “No guys, that is what we do. We’re within the battle enterprise. These items occur.”

White added that even UFC supervisor Tiki Ghosn was concerned within the mayhem.

“Tiki took a pair for the workforce and he’s not even on a workforce. Tiki took a pair water bottles to the pinnacle, a pair slaps, kicks.”

The UFC boss additionally revealed that Khamzat Chimaev and Nate Diaz’s groups comprised of over 100 individuals backstage.

He confirmed that the weigh-ins and the principle occasion would go forward as deliberate, however with tremendously elevated safety.


As a substitute of the standard format of getting all key fighters on stage, White declared the fighters would come out in pairs.

However solely Kevin Holland and Daniel Rodriguez got here out on stage for a short interview earlier than the occasion was deserted totally “for everybody’s security,” as White mentioned.

White appeared fully frazzled and visibly livid, earlier than his private safety guard intervened. White appeared to inform him “F**ok it. Wrap. Wrap it.”

He advised the expectant crowd: “Yeah, this ain’t going to occur. I apologise all people. I’m in very bizarre waters right here. This has by no means occurred within the historical past of this firm. Belief me after I inform you that is the best determination not to do that press convention proper now.”

Boos rained down, and White couldn’t assist however agree with the followers’ livid response.

“I hear ya, I’m with ya. For everyone’s security, that is the best determination. I apologise.”

He later mentioned: “That is the craziest press convention we’ve ever had, that’s for certain… It is a first and I assure you will probably be the final.”

Common fighter Tony Ferguson later emerged to greet the group to nice cheers.

Chimaev had advised ESPN earlier within the week he was able to battle Diaz and his workforce earlier than the principle occasion.

“In the event that they wanna battle earlier than (Saturday), f*ck the cash, brother, I’m gonna battle with them. I like to battle,” Chimaev advised ESPN. “I’ve been born for battle. I’m inside a warrior, don’t care. When the fights come, you don’t care about cash or what’s behind it, simply battle.

“If he desires to battle there together with his workforce, I’ve like 20 guys with me. We’ll battle with all of the groups, you understand. I hope so. I might love if it occurs, one thing loopy issues there. His workforce is outdated, brother. My workforce is contemporary. We kill this. His workforce nearly handicapped, brother.”

Initially revealed as UFC 279: Press conference abandoned after backstage brawl

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