UFC president Dana White is not backing down from his lifetime ban of journalist Ariel Halwani. White says he will allow Helwani come to UFC 200, but only if the journalist purchases a ticket like any other UFC fan, says a report from TMZ.
“He can cover all the events he wants, he just can’t have a credential,” White told TMZ.
Asked if that meant Helwani could purchase a ticket, White said “Yes.” Of course, a ticket does not come with media access Helwani — and any other journalist covering the event, or the UFC overall — has.
Despite a recent surge of negative coverage of the UFC thanks to the organization having a hissy fit over a reporter doing some actual reporting, White appears to be digging in with a typical meathead attitude over what he believes to be improper journalistic tendencies, which is so horribly off the mark it’s comical. Given the chance to make amends and uphold a solid relationship between its organization and the media that cover it, White has metaphorically spit in the eye of journalistic integrity, and not looked back from doing so.
Helwani can still do his job without a credential, of course. He would just have to rely on relationships with the fighters and be able to find ways around the closed doors of the UFC to get his information and story. Though not impossible, it’s certainly not an ideal situation for Helwani, who now risks losing any insider information he may have been able to get with a credential.
As long as White is in charge of the UFC, however, Helwani should not plan on receiving a credential ever again if White stays true to his misguided word. White told TMZ Helwani will never be allowed to receive a credential “as long as I’m here.”
White had the chance to correct a wrong, and he tapped out like a chump.