Former UFC lightweight, Paul Felder, probably isn’t going to make any new friends with his latest comments calling UFC fighters sensitive.
Felder, who now works as one of the most respected color commentators the UFC has, voiced his struggles with the fighters as it pertains to his commentary role. He says that oftentimes the fighters complain about his (or fellow commentary team members) opinions or breakdowns.
“One hundred percent (they are sensitive) – no doubt about it,” Felder told MMA Junkie Radio. “We’re a sensitive group, and I was, too. I can speak for myself, when I was fighting and someone would say this, it would drive me nuts all day.
He isn’t exactly wrong either. Recently Marvin Vettori took offense at Paul’s commentary and took to Twitter to call him out over it.
“Sometimes I feel like commentators, they just try to bias the public and whoever watches the fight cause they have that power sometimes and it’s wrong,” Vettori told MMA Fighting in October. “We put our heart and soul out there and even him being a fighter and even him talking to the fighters before they fight, he should know better. Sometimes, I don’t know what goes on but I just feel like him in particular, he’s a puppet.”
“Paul Felder tried to be the smart kid in the comments when he replied to me,” Vettori said. “I didn’t really like that. It’s not that I didn’t like it, it’s just coming from him, it’s not like it really made sense but he tried to be funny. I addressed the thing that was important to me.”
Felder brought that issue up in his interview with MMA Junkie and explained his point of view.
“It drives me nuts when a fighter complains about us, and I take it to heart. That’s why I snapped at (Marvin) Vettori and we had a back-and-forth because me and (Daniel Cormier) and Dominick (Cruz). We were one of you guys,” he said. “So if they don’t like what we say or they think we’re biased, it really does upset us. I can tell you on a personal note that we all talk about that, and these are things that we think about. We want to do justice and diligence to these men and women that fighting in that cage. I love (commentating). It’s one of the reasons I was able to retire early.”
Most recently Felder stepped up to replace Joe Rogan on UFC commentary at UFC 266, a move that delighted many fans. Felder has been a staple on fight night shows as well.