Jon Anik

After over a decade, UFC play-by-play announcer Jon Anik is getting tired of negativity from the fanbase.

On an episode of the Anik & Florian Podcast this week, which he cohosts with UFC veteran and MMA analyst Kenny Florian, Anik bemoaned negativity from the UFC fanbase, especially when it comes to close fights.

He said that he is “growing tired of this MMA space” due to negativity from fans after a close fight and that he could eventually leave his job because of it.

Here’s the full podcast. Anik’s first round of comments begins at the 35:10 mark, with a second round coming at 1:08:00.

Anik called out the negative reactions from fans towards his opinions on Saturday’s Sean Strickland-Dricus de Plessis fight, saying he was “growing tired of this MMA space” and the “morass of negativity” after a close fight.

MMA Fighting transcribed his comments.

“I am growing tired of this MMA space a little bit, and just the morass of negativity when there is a close fight, because even if you and I both thought Dricus du Plessis won the fight, we try to present that information respectfully,” Anik said. “When I go on to X, or when I go to our YouTube comments, it seems like a lot of these fans are just in attack mode. I don’t know if these fans are casual fans or not, but I appreciate the passion, but I’m getting to a point where at 45 years of age where I don’t know how much time I have left in this MMA space, because if I go do pro football, like, I’m not necessarily going to be dealing with this lowest common denominator all the time.

“I don’t know, I just feel like there’s a lot of malice and disrespect from the fan base. We can disagree, don’t take it from me, Demetrious Johnson and Kenny Florian thought ‘DDP’ won the fight. I’ve just been very off put with the negativity that has permeated my feed since Saturday night, and I’m just not sure how much longer I have in this space, honestly.”

Anik closed the segment by saying “but those of you suggesting that there’s any bias, or you don’t like me, well, you’ll probably get your f****** wish come 2026 because honestly, at this point, I’ve had it.”

To end the podcast, Anik again discussed negativity from fans, saying he’s “trying to be accessible” on social media, but the vitriol lobbed his way instead “makes me disengage.”

“I try to be accessible and engage with fans, especially on X, and some of my broadcast partners—Joe Rogan chief among them—their profile is so high, and they are so famous that they can’t possibly engage with the fans on a regular basis,” Anik said. “Even somebody like Daniel Cormier. So you’ve got to post and ghost a little bit. But for me, I try to be that accessible conduit for the fans, and what I’m finding is that 90 percent of what I am sifting through is negative, and a lot of those comments are said in an antagonistic, attacking type of way. I’ve got three kids and just better things to do with my time.

“But again, I’m trying to be accessible, especially after a fight like this, I want to be able to engage, but when I see the venom that some people are coming at us with, it just makes me disengage. So I guess maybe my thesis statement should be if you see me disengage and not be as omnipresent and as accessible on X, it’s because the fan base is starting to turn me off. [ESPN reporter] Marc Raimondi had a very thoughtful post about this on Instagram, this sport is getting worse by the minute in terms of all the negativity in the air.”

Anik’s feelings are sensible. Getting attacked just for giving your opinion about who won a fight is ridiculous. And while there’s negativity towards announcers in other sports, it generally doesn’t rise to the level of “malice” to the point where a broadcaster is wondering about whether or not he should keep calling a sport.

My advice to Anik? Stop trying to be accessible and engaging with fans. It’s not going to suddenly get better because you vented about it. In fact, it’s probably going to get worse. “Never read the comments” has been a maxim online for years upon years, and it’s still true today.

[MMA Fighting]

About Joe Lucia

I hate your favorite team. I also sort of hate most of my favorite teams.