After an incident between Dan Hardy and Herb Dean took place last weekend, Dana White has stressed that if anyone interferes with an official he will fire them ‘on the spot’.
White’s comments come after UFC color commentator Hardy was caught on the broadcast for UFC Fight Island 3 shouting at referee Dean for a stoppage during a preliminary fight on the card. Hardy and Dean also exchanged words after the fight.
The UFC president also commented on a similar incident that took place on Friday during a fight for a promotion in UAE. Referee Marc Goddard was shoved and grabbed by a fighter who refused to release a rear-naked choke after his opponent tapped.
Talking at a pre-fight scrum for UFC Vegas 5, White put his foot down on anyone confronting officials.
“If you work for me and you approach a judge or a referee or any type of official, I will fire you,” White said. “You will lose your job. You will never work for me again if you do that.
“You want to criticize judges, you want to criticize referees, you didn’t agree with a decision or things like that...we love Dan,” White said. “Dan got emotional. And the problem is now, with this setup, it’s a lot easier to do. It’s a lot easier to interact with everybody, from the fighters to the refs to the media and everybody. If you work for me in any capacity and you approach a referee or judge or an official, I will fire you that night on the spot. That can never happen here again.”
White has evidenced his zero-tolerance approach towards fighters who have confronted referees in the past. In 2014, Jason High was cut from the UFC for shoving referee Kevin Mulhall. The UFC president also had some very harsh words for Roy Nelson after he kicked “Big” John McCarthy in 2016.
“I’m speaking to him right now,” White said of Hardy. “I’m speaking to everybody. Don’t ever do it, ever again. And if you’re a fighter, and you put your hands on or threaten any official, you will never, ever fight here again, period.”