A photographer named Mark Aragon has reportedly been banned from UFC events after referring to Cris Cyborg as a “dude” on Instagram and describing her using male pronouns.
Aragon, who works for the gym where Holly Holm trains, posted the following message to Instagram after Cyborg defeated Holm last Saturday, alongside a photo of Cyborg: “This dude is tough as hell. That being said at the press conference he said Holly was the first one to make his nose bleed.”
Cyborg responded (also on Instagram) that, “It is not acceptable for an official representative of @hollyholm @jacksonwink_MMA to call me transgender following my Fight … I expect an apology or their ability to get credentials for future UFC events to be affected by these actions.”
It is not acceptable for an official representative of @hollyholm @jacksonwink_mma to call me transgender following my Fight. Their official photographer was given a backstage credential to attend the @UFC and I expect an apology or their ability to get credentials for future UFC events to be affected by these actions. @ma2_media 🇧🇷🇧🇷🇧🇷🇧🇷🇧🇷🇧🇷 Não é aceitável que um representante oficial da @hollyholm @jacksonwink_mma me ligue transgênero na sequência da minha luta. Seu fotógrafo oficial recebeu uma credencial de bastidores para participar do @UFC e espero que uma desculpa ou sua capacidade de obter credenciais para futuros eventos do @ufc_brasil sejam afetadas por essas ações.
The UFC promptly issued a statement condemning Aragon’s post about Cyborg an announcing that he “will not be granted access for future events.” Via MMAFighting.com:
“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,” the UFC statement read.
“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.”
Aragon, for his part, apologized in a follow-up Instagram post while also criticizing Cyborg and her camp for various comments he claims they made.
As the most hated photographer in the world today, I feel its necessary to comment on the recent fall out I’m causing for both Hollys and Cyborgs camps, and their respectful friends, fans, and families. At the conclusion of UFC 219, I took the final bus out of the arena back to the hotel and ended up on the same bus as Cris Cyborg and her team. As I sat in the back I began to hear them cheer and revel in their victory and discuss small parts of the event. A couple things really bothered me. I heard them laughing and commenting on a picture that renowned photographer Esther Lin took of Cyborgs toes literally in Hollys eye from a kick. Cyborg then went on to discuss how during clinches “the bitch” just “stayed and hugged her but she did nothing”. When I got back to the hotel I posted a picture with an inappropriate caption that everyone is now talking about. I was obviously acting out of anger and frustration. My personal emotions got in the way of my professional status which I failed to adhere to. But there is more to it, Cyborg leading up to the fight through her own Social Media accounts accused Holly and our camp of being the most drug failed camp ever. This is a totally fabricated lie and can’t be based on any merit whatsoever. 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. That being said I am embarrassed by my actions and I sincerely apologize to @criscyborg and her friends, fans, and most importantly her family for posting such an ugly misrepresentation of a great hard earned championship retention. I also want to apologize to the members of team Jacksonwink who were effected by that insincere post.
UFC has famously gotten in trouble in the past for pulling credentials from media members, but this situation should be quite different. When you crudely and offensively insult one of the biggest stars, you can generally expect some consequences.