UFC play-by-play commentator Jon Anik faced criticism from MMA fans and Sean Strickland for his commentary on the UFC 297 main event. In the closely contested fight between Dricus du Plessis and Sean Strickland, du Plessis secured a victory via split decision. After the match, Strickland used social media to attribute his defeat to an alleged headbutt from du Plessis, sparking controversy.
Furthermore, fans of Strickland on social media presented arguments supporting the American’s claim for victory. Despite this, Jon Anik, along with other fighters, publicly expressed the belief that du Plessis did enough to win the bout. After the negative response from MMA fans, Anik even hinted at retirement from commentary much to the surprise of the MMA community.
Jon Anik apologizes to MMA supporters
Jon Anik later apologized to MMA supporters following his initial hint of retirement. He used Instagram to convey his apology, and fans, as well as fellow fighters, showed their support for Anik on social media.
“Last week on my podcast, I was in a heightened emotional state following myriad allegations of bias at UFC 297 and I made some regrettable comments relating to the MMA fan base”, Anik wrote on Instagram showing regret for his earlier comments on retirement.
“While I was surprised at the extent to which my comments were re-purposed and
sensationalized, I need to be more responsible on an open microphone”, Anik showed his surprise at the reaction he got after he insinuated retirement. “So much work goes into the execution of just one UFC pay-per-view so it can be tough when my integrity on broadcast is called into question”, Anik further stated that he got emotional when his integrity was questioned.
“To those MMA fans whom I’ve offended, I am sorry. That was not my intention. For 12 years, I’ve prided myself on being accessible to the fan base and that will continue”, Anik apologized to the MMA community for the rash statements he made whilst being emotional. He further added that his intention was never to criticize the MMA fans.
Jon Anik is set to make his next appearance on the UFC 298 PPV in Anaheim, which will be headlined by a featherweight title fight between Alexander Volkanovski and Ilia Topuria. Volkanovski has expressed confidence in shocking the world at UFC 298, while Topuria claims he will knock out the long-reigning featherweight champion. Former champion Max Holloway publicly acknowledged the difficulty of betting against Volkanovski, considering his own 0-3 record against him.
Fans believe Jon Anik did not need to apologize
Jon Anik’s public apology on Instagram did not go unnoticed on social media as fans and fighters supported Anik and even stated that he should’ve never apologized.
“Baffled by the apology. No way can I accept this”, commented Layla Anna-Lee, the wife of Ian Machado Garry, who recently had to face criticism on social media.
“This community is BRUTAL but nobody hating on you is doing better than you”, commented popular MMA journalist Nina Marie-Daniele who also happens to be a very close friend of Sean Strickland. “Jon is the fucking best of the best”, commented Tom Aspinall the interim UFC heavyweight champion.
“Ur the man”, Belal Muhammad expressed his support of Anik. “You didn’t need to apologize for keeping it real 🤗🤗🤗”, UFC anchor Karyn Bryant showed her support to Anik. “🐐”, commented Jamahal Hill who insinuated that Anik is the greatest in a commentary. “Don’t sweat the petty stuff, pet the sweaty stuff. 🏆”, UFC Hall of Famer Urijah Faber showed his support.
“U the man”, commented former UFC BMF champion Jorge Masvidal. “Don’t apologize for being you and keeping it real!”, UFC legend Quinton ‘Rampage’ Jackson showed his support to Anik. “Our friend Jon 👊🏼”, commented retired UFC double champion Amanda Nunes, the arguable GOAT of women’s MMA.
What do you make out of Jon Anik’s apology? Leave your thoughts below!