Just when Matt Mitrione thought his spot on the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) roster was safe following his impressive 19-second knockout victory of Philip De Fries last weekend (April 6, 2013) at UFC on Fuel TV 9, "Meathead" has found himself in hot water company brass.
The world's leading mixed martial arts (MMA) promotion today (April 8, 2013) announced that it has suspend Mitrione for his offensive comments aimed at transgender female fighter Fallon Fox, which he made during his recent appearance on "The MMA Hour." The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) 10 alum described Fox as a "sick, sociopathic disgusting freak" who should be "embarrassed" for wanting to beat up women.
Literally hours later, Zuffa suspended the former National Football League (NFL) lineman, calling his comments disrespectful to the gay and lesbian community.
From the official statement:
"The UFC was appalled by the transphobic comments made by heavyweight Matt Mitrione today in an interview on 'The MMA Hour.' The organization finds Mr. Mitrione's comments offensive and wholly unacceptable and -- as a direct result of this significant breach of the UFC's code of conduct -- Mr. Mitrione's UFC contract has been suspended and the incident is being investigated. The UFC is a friend and ally of the LGBT community, and expects and requires all 450 of its athletes to treat others with dignity and respect."
Mitrione previously revealed he was "fighting for his job" in Sweden on the heels of his two-fight losing streak, but despite his recent victory in Sweden, it seems he won't be seeing action inside the Octagon anytime soon. Indeed, he'll more than likely have to answer to Matt Hughes, the recently-installed Vice President of Athlete Development and Government Relations, who is charged with enforcing the promotion's new Code of Conduct.
That should be an interesting investigation.
Fox, meanwhile, has been a controversial topic over the last several weeks after it was revealed she underwent gender reassignment surgery in 2006 to become a woman. She was issued a license to compete in Florida earlier this year and registered a knockout win under the Championship Fighting Alliance (CFA) banner shortly thereafter.
However, her license was frozen pending an investigation after the victory because the commission was unaware that Fox was born a male. She has since been absolved of any wrongdoing in regard to her application to compete in the "Sunshine State," clearing the way for Fox to return to female MMA action possible next month (read more here).
The timing for Mitrione's Octagon return, meanwhile, is not so clear.
As always, keep it locked on MMAmania.com as more details emerge regarding this developing story.