Well, that’s one way to ruin a hard-fought win.
After 15 tough minutes with Chinese opponent Aori Qileng, Cody Durden emerged victorious Saturday at UFC Fight Night 198, picking up a unanimous decision with three scores of 29-28 from the judges, but it’s what he said afterward that will be remembered most.
During the post-fight octagon interview, cageside commentator Daniel Cormier asked Durden (12-3-1 MMA, 1-1-1 UFC) if the fight went as he expected, and his answer was terrible.
“I knew he was gonna be tough, but I had to send him back to China where he came from,” Durden said.
The sentiment garnered an audible groan from people in attendance at the UFC Apex, and Cormier – taken aback by the sinophobia – didn’t even bother to ask another question.
Things were awkward when the broadcast was tossed back to play-by-play man Brendan Fitzgerald.
“All right, Cody Durden, um, statement made I guess?” Fitzgerald said. “Victory in the octagon most importantly for this flyweight from Georgia.”
Cormier didn’t know how to react when he got back to the desk.
“Fitzy, I was watching the highlights as he said that, so you know, you say that, I take the microphone, Fitzy,” Cormier said. “I have nothing else to do there.”
For his racist remark, Durden was criticized on Twitter by a host of fellow UFC fighters and some members of the media.
And the sinophobia rolls on as the Chinese fighters continue to fill the role of The Iron Sheik for many in this space… who saw this coming
— Dan Tom (@DanTomMMA) November 20, 2021
— Jamahal Hill (@JamahalH) November 20, 2021
Cody Durden making white people look dumb again
— Jared Gordon (@JFlashGordonMMA) November 20, 2021
— Muhammad Mokaev (@muhammadmokaev) November 20, 2021
FUCK CODY DURDEN! Racism is never cool POS #ufcvegas43
— Casey Oneill (@kingcaseymma) November 20, 2021
And Cody Durden loses any good will that he may have earned after saying that he wanted to "send his opponent back to China".
Not a good look at all.
— Aaron Bronsteter (@aaronbronsteter) November 20, 2021
— Din Thomas (@DinThomas) November 20, 2021
In his post-fight news conference, Durden doubled down and said his remark wasn’t racially motivated.
“If they don’t like it, do something,” he said.
Or you could just do better? Yeah, just do better.
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