UFC president Dana White often willingly offers his opinion on matters concerning the promotion, even when not prompted. In this case, White revealed the only UFC champion to ever back out of a fight due to alleged mental weakness.
Back at UFC 213, bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes was set to face off against Velentina Shevchenko in a highly anticipated rematch. However, Nunes backed out of the fight on only hours notice. The incident caused a stir of controversy, as Dana White has since revealed that the champion was medically cleared by the UFC doctors to compete.
Speaking to MMA Fighting, White explained the situation.
“Leading up to the ceremonial weigh-ins, I got a call that she wasn’t feeling well, and it was questionable whether she was going to show up to the ceremonials. Because the doctor needed to see her and they needed to find out what was going on with her, so, she does them, everything’s good.”
“This morning, I wake up and I hear that she’s not feeling well again,” Dana White continued. “And … she’s not feeling well again and she’s probably not going to fight. So, I asked the doctors what’s wrong with her. She was medically cleared. She was physically OK, they found nothing wrong with her, but she didn’t feel right.
“It’s not like she was like ‘I’m absolutely refusing to fight,’ She said ‘I don’t feel right, I don’t feel good.’ I think that it was 90 percent mental and maybe 10 percent physical, I think a lot of fighters have had times where they don’t feel right.
“These situations arise all the time,” White later added. “I don’t think we’ve ever had a situation like today, though, where she was physically capable of fighting.”
“I won’t do that again,” he said. “I won’t headline with that title again.”