Fabricio Werdum will be back on television starting this weekend — and not in the cage.
The former UFC heavyweight champion revealed to The MMA Hour on Monday that the UFC has rehired him as a commentator on its Spanish broadcast following a Jan. 29 meeting with UFC president Dana White in Las Vegas.
His first assignment will be UFC 221, which takes place in Perth, Australia on Saturday.
”I’m happy about this, because I love this job,” Werdum said. “It’s not just about money. For sure it’s money, too, because it’s my work. But I love this work. The first time I go to the TV job for commentary, I no like, because I have a fight coming up and I no wanna do that. But now I love this. I love TV, because it’s in Spanish, for all Latin America, for USA in FOX Desportes, and I’m fluent in Spanish; I’m very comfortable there. I love this. After I stop fighting in maybe three years or four years, I have a good job.”
The UFC did not immediately return a request for comment Monday night.
Werdum was fired from his commentary duties after posting negative comments about Reebok, the UFC’s apparel partner, in October 2016. He said that he would not return to the position even if offered the job back.
Werdum said he is back on good terms with White, adding that the 40-minute meeting last week went well and that “everything’s positive” now.
“Sometimes it’s good to talk with the boss. Everything’s good,” the Brazilian said. “We talked about everything for 2018. ... (We’re on) the same page for sure.
“It’s very important you understand the business. Sometimes, the Brazilian guys go different ways, but this is a business. I work for the UFC for a long time, and I’m a company guy. This is very important. You help the company, too.”
Last November, White said he didn’t have a good relationship with the top heavyweight. The promotion head hadn’t been willing to meet with Werdum for a while.
Werdum has been surrounded in controversy in recent months. In late September, ahead of a bout at UFC 216, he got into a verbal altercation with Tony Ferguson, who claimed the interim lightweight title days later.
One month later, during the week of his main-event fight at UFC Fight Night 121 against Marcin Tybura, he threw a boomerang at welterweight Colby Covington in Sydney, Australia. He was fined $600.
Nonetheless, he has been finding success in the Octagon. Riding a two-fight winning streak, Werdum is coming off wins over Walt Harris and the aforementioned Tybura. He is set to face Alexander Volkov in the UFC Fight Night 127 main event on March 17 in London, England.