If things had gone according to the original plan, UFC women’s bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes would have taken on dangerous challenger Valentina Shevchenko in the main event of UFC 213 last night. Regrettably, reports began surfacing yesterday afternoon that Nunes had been hospitalized and that she would not be competing on the card.
While this was undeniably disappointing news, initial concern surrounded Nunes’ wellbeing. Luckily, we quickly learned that the champion had been released from hospital with a clean bill of health.
As it turns out, in fact, Nunes had apparently been cleared to fight by doctors, but apparently elected not to compete anyway.
This fact did not go over with UFC President Dana White, who damned the bantamweight champion for her refusal to fight.
“After the [early] weigh-ins she made weight. Leading up to the ceremonial weigh ins I got a call she wasn’t feeling well,” White said at the UFC 213 post-fight press conference (via Sherdog.com). “It was questionable whether she was going to show up. She does them, she was good. This morning, I hear she’s not feeling well again and she’s probably not gonna fight. I asked the doctor’s what’s wrong, she was medically cleared, they found nothing wrong with her. She just didn’t feel well.”
“You can’t make anybody fight,” he continued. “She said, ‘I don’t feel right.’ I think it was 90 percent mental and 10 percent physical. A lot of times we’ve had fighters who don’t feel right and other times they’re outright sick. I don’t know if I’ve ever had a situation like today where she was physically capable of fighting.”
White then suggested that this title fight might be rescheduled for UFC 215, which goes down this September in Edmonton. Apparently, however, he doesn’t trust Nunes with the headlining spot anymore.
“I know that both camps were offered Edmonton,” White said. “I don’t know where we are.”
“I won’t do that again,” he said. “I won’t main event that title again.”
What do you think of these comments from Dana White? Is he wrong to throw Amanda Nunes under the bus like this?
This article first appeared on BJPenn.com on 7/9/2017.