Former Ultimate Fighting Championship heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski of Belarus is apologizing for a homophobic slur he used Saturday night, during a post-match interview at the UFC on ESPN 4 card in San Antonio, Tex.
Arlovski’s remarks came after a dominant win by unanimous decision over former International Fighting League champion American Ben Rothwell (36-12 overall MMA, 6-6 in the UFC), who entered the bout sporting a 13-match win streak. Arlovski (28-18 overall MMA, 17-12 in the UFC) had lost three of his last four fights.
After the match, in an interview with ESPN 4, Arlovski snapped at critics who have questioned his ability to take punishment during his recent slump. “Once again I will tell everyone shut your fucking mouths about my ‘glass chin,’ so go fuck yourself, faggots,” Arlovski stated. “That’s it. I proved to everyone you’re fucking wrong.”
A statement of apology to MMA Junkie came the next day. Arlovski said, “I apologize to anyone I offended with my poor choice of words. I did not mean to offend any one group or person. I am deeply sorry and will not use these type of words in the future.”
The UFC also issued a statement to MMA Junkie, acknowledging Arlovski’s anti-gay choice of words, which is in violation of the UFC Code of Conduct. “UFC is aware of the recent remarks from heavyweight athlete Andrei Arlovski,” UFC representatives said, “The organization does not condone any disparaging comments regarding race, religion and/or sexual orientation. We have already addressed this issue directly with Andrei and his team. This is an ongoing priority for the organization, and there will be continued monitoring of these types of situations moving forward.”
As of Monday afternoon, there was no word on further sanctions against Arlovski from the UFC. In similar past incidences, the UFC has applied punishments, but critics have accused the championship of uneven enforcement of those penalties.