The extracurricular brawling in the aftermath of the Conor McGregor vs. Khabib Nurmagomedov (which some people saw coming a mile away) was a black eye on a sport that seems to have been perpetually fighting to be seen as more legitimate over its now 25-year history.
Blame for the chaos in Las Vegas was spread around to everyone from Khabib to McGregor to Dana White and others, depending on who you are.
The best take, however, may have been postited by UFC legend and former UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, Chuck Liddell.
Liddell, who along with fighters like Randy Couture, Tito Ortiz, Ken Shamrock, Vitor Belfort and others, helped take the UFC from “human cockfighting” to a multi-billion dollar business, wrote a scathing series of Instagram posts condemning both fighters, as well as the UFC.
“Incredible performance by both fighters, Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov. But to end it like they did was a huge embarrassment to the sport,” wrote Liddell. “We (fighters)are sportsmen and champions and we should hold ourselves to a higher standard. We owe it to our fans and the sport itself. I don’t know when things started turning into some kind of sh*t show?!!! Unfortunately, when you allow more and more B.S. during weigh ins and outside of fights; You only slap fighters on the wrist for acting like barbarians and then offer them bigger contracts and reward them for this behavior. There is no penalty for their actions and it condones this type of behavior and consequently our sport loses its sacred respect.”
“Both sides were in the wrong here! However, this is what you should expect when you start to reward fighters for this kind of behavior and when you use a video of a bus attack to promote a fight,” explained Liddell. “Oh and btw look who threw the first punch inside the ring before “he got jumped unprovoked” This UFC is not what we old timers built with our blood and sweat! It’s unacceptable!”
“In case you didn’t get a clear view, here it is in crystal clear color from start to finish. Regardless of what everyone wants to say videos don’t lie. We need to bring back respect to this sport that i love!”
The 48-year-old Liddell, who hasn’t fought in MMA since June 12, 2010, will be making his return on November 24th in a fight versus his long-time UFC rival Tito Ortiz, 43.
“First week of training camp down and 7 weeks to go. I can’t wait to fight November 24th coming back to the sport I love to show everyone what this sport is all about,” wrote Lidell on Sunday night alongside several photos of his training.