Originally published at UFC cancels press conference after several backstage incidents
The UFC was forced to cancel its UFC 279 press conference on Thursday evening after multiple incidents backstage prior to the start of the event.
The press conference was just beginning at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas with fighters Kevin Holland and Daniel Rodriguez present on the stage when Dana White pulled the plug on the press conference. (CORRECTION: We had originally listed the press conference taking place at the T-Mobile Arena).
White later spoke to the media regarding why it was canceled.
Dana White was forced to cancel a fight week press conference for the first time in UFC history 👀 #UFC279 pic.twitter.com/IQdqgKo7ul
— ESPN MMA (@espnmma) September 9, 2022
White said there were multiple issues occurring at the same time and that the UFC did not have sufficient security in place, something he said they will address in the future. He added that it got “very physical”.
White was concerned about it escalating if they went ahead with the press conference.
White said there were no injuries or any of the fighters be in jeopardy for UFC 279 this Saturday. He said “this is the fight business” and seemed there would not be any fines or suspensions for this issue.
Ariel Helwani reports that the teams of Khamzat Chimaev and Kevin Holland got into it with words and “some physicality” with Chimaev allegedly delivering a push kick to Holland in the chest.
Manager Tiki Ghosn got between the two sides and broke it up. Then, Nate Diaz and his team arrived and saw Ghosn with Chimaev’s team and that escalated to water bottles being thrown. Helwani believes Ghosn was hit by a bottle or two but was not seriously injured.
Shortly after, they made the call to cancel the press conference.
Here’s the full story regarding why the UFC 279 press conference was canceled before it started. pic.twitter.com/adIIQfKFXW
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) September 9, 2022
Chimaev and Diaz are scheduled to fight in the main event of UFC 279 this Saturday while Holland is competing against Daniel Rodriguez on the card.