After being urged to do so by Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino, the UFC have banned JacksonWink media director and photographer Mark Aragon from future events.
Justino scored a unanimous decision win over JacksonWink star Holly Holm in the main event of UFC 219 on Saturday night, retaining her women’s featherweight title in the process. Just hours later, Aragon took aim at ‘Cyborg’ from his company’s Instagram account, referring to her as a “dude” and using masculine pronouns in a since-deleted post.
Aragon later claimed that he made the comments in anger after hearing the Brazilian and her team referring to Holm as “the bitch” on one of the fighter buses following the event. He also said that the group were laughing at an action shot in which Holm could be seen taking a toe to the eye. Furthermore, Aragon claimed that this incident built upon the frustration he was already feeling pre-fight, due to comments that Justino made in October about drug testing.
“3[rd] visit from USADA in less than a month,” Justino, who herself tested positive for a performance-enhancing drug in 2012, wrote on Twitter. “Let’s go see if my next opponent is doing exams in the same proportion I’m doing!”
“I want a guarantee [Holly Holm] is tested the same number of times as me during this camp,” she added. “Her gym has a history 2(sic)! I’m clean.”
“No gym in MMA has more fighters doping violations than [JacksonWink MMA].”
“This is a totally fabricated lie and can’t be based on any merit whatsoever,” Aragon wrote in response to these accusations on Monday. “Only one CURRENT athlete from our camp has ever been punished for USADA related issues and I was extremely frustrated with the perception that Cyborg and her fans had painted us as cheaters and losers. Jackson Wink had over 60 UFC fights throughout the world and hundreds of other fighters fighting all around the world at many different organizations. Every fighter has their home team based out of whatever country or state they hail from and come here for training, some of them with their own teams. We absolutely can’t be responsible for each and every one of their daily activities.”
Aragon, however, did go on to issue an apology to ‘Cyborg’, saying that he felt “embarrassed” by his actions.
That apology hasn’t saved his media credential, though.
On Tuesday, the UFC released a statement in which it confirmed that Aragon will not be admitted to future events.
“UFC is aware and troubled with the recent statements made by a social media representative from the JacksonWink MMA Academy in Albuquerque, New Mexico as it concerns women’s featherweight champion, Cris Cyborg,” read the statement.
“UFC does not condone or tolerate the remarks that were used. The organization has reached out to the JacksonWink team to inform them that the individual in question will not be granted access for future events(via MMAFighting).”
Last night, ‘Cyborg’ showed her appreciation for the UFC’s decision via social media.
— @CrisCyborg Grand Slam Champion (@criscyborg) January 3, 2018
Responding to Aragon’s comments in a post on their official Facebook page on Monday, JacksonWink said that they “don’t condone putting others down.” They offered ‘Cyborg’ congratulations on the win, but no apology.
Holm has yet to comment publicly on the controversy.