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Ultimate Fighting Championship President Dana White is not shying away from defending the decision to book Greg Hardy and Rachael Ostovich on the same card this weekend.
While UFC on ESPN+ 1 will be headlined by a super fight between UFC flyweight title holder Henry Cejudo and bantamweight king T.J. Dillashaw for the 125 pound belt, much of the pre-fight talk has revolved around Hardy, who is an alleged domestic abuser, fighting at the same event as flyweight contender Ostovich, the recent victim of an alleged domestic violence attack by her husband.
ESPN reporter Ariel Helwani labeled the promotion “incredibly tone deaf” for putting the pair together especially on such a historic card for the promotion and questioned why Hardy is even on the card to begin with given the caliber of fighters he’s faced so far.
White was interviewed by TMZ and hit back at the critics, in particular Helwani, and blasted him for his comments before stating that the pair would no doubt be on the same card somewhere in the future (via MMAMania.com):
“I don’t give a sh-t what Ariel Helwani thinks. Who the f-ck is Ariel Helwani to question anything we do? I think we’ve done a pretty good job in 20 years, I could give a sh-t what he thinks, or anybody else for that matter. If you’re that type of douchey … whatever you want to call him, you can make something out of anything. He’s on the roster, she’s on the roster. They’re eventually gonna line up on a card sometime. If you’re that type of reporter, you’d have something to say about it.”
Hardy will be making his UFC debut against Allen Crowder on Saturday night in the co-main event and heads into the fight with a 3-0 professional record. The former professional football player has finished all three of his opponents in under a minute.
UFC on ESPN+ 1, also known as UFC Fight Night 143, is headlined by a flyweight title fight between Henry Cejudo and T.J. Dillashaw on Jan. 19, 2019 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.