Professional fighters, especially men, are often the subject of taunts and challenges from other men, but usually when those other men are suffering from testosterone bloat due to indulging in a few too many alcoholic beverages.
UFC light heavyweight challenger Chael Sonnen, however, was the target of an unwieldy fan at the recent The Ultimate Fighter 17 Finale in Las Vegas.
“(Chael) was shaking hands with everybody and some guy says, ‘hey Chael,’” recounted UFC president Dana White recently. “Chael goes over there and the guy just starts swinging on him and started trying to punch him.”
White says the man identified himself as being from Brazil, a country full of people who sometimes take umbrage with Sonnen because of his vocal onslaught leading up to his fights with UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva.
Sonnen, during a UFC 159 media conference call on Monday, confirmed the incident, although he was short on details.
“There were a lot of people around and my focus was in five different directions, including on him,” said Sonnen. “Ultimately, he got upset and he went to take a punch and security grabbed him and they took him out.
“I didn’t like seeing him leave. He had very expensive and good seats and I wish he would have seen the show. At the same time, you can’t do that behavior.”
White concurred, alluding to the possibility that the overzealous fan didn’t exactly leave under his own accord.
“It was a bad move,” stated White. “That guy didn’t get taken out of there politely.”