Nigeria’s Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) middleweight world champion, Israel Adesanya (The Last Style Bender)) has sent out a heartfelt apology to his fans, after his threat to ‘rape’ an opponent caused him to lose a multi-million dollar endorsement with German motor manufacturer, BMW.
The watching world was left stunned, after New Zealand-based Adesanya declared that he was ready to ‘rape’ his latest rival, Kevin Holland on the next night of UFC, following which BMW announced his eviction, even as the star quickly issued a groveling apology.
However, megasportsarena.com gatheerd that the riposte by Adesanya, who recently lost his bid to add the light heavyweight belt to his title, did not come until New Zealand’s Deputy Prime Minister, Grant Robertson, who is also the sports minister, led the protestations.
Robertson blasted the middleweight champ and urged the UFC to consider taking action against the Nigerian ace, adding: “There is never a time to make flippant comments about rape. It’s just not something anybody should do.
“I’m sure Israel understands that. I believe he has deleted the tweet in question. It will be up to the UFC as to what they do. I would certainly be making clear to him, and to anybody actually, that we have to take rape seriously. It’s not an issue that anyone should be making jokes or flippant comments about at all.”
Adesanya had been in line to be unveiled as ‘the face of BMW New Zealand’ on Monday and did not waste time with an appeal to the entire sports community, but the company decided to scrap the endorsement package after the fighter’s unsavoury comments last weekend.
Australian TV network, Nine reported: “Due to the comments made by an athlete online, we have reviewed our pending association with said athlete and we have decided not to push forward with a specific ambassador for the brand at this time in New Zealand.”
The deal went bust after Adesanya said he ‘will f****ing’ rape’ Holland in an Instagram video, which he since deleted and immediately took to social to reveal his regrets, as the 185-pound UFC champ said: “Last weekend fight talk escalated to a point in which I crossed the line.
“I understand the gravity of this word and how it can affect and hurt other people apart from my opponent, although that was NEVER my intention. I am still to growing under the spotlight, and I take this as a lesson to be more selective with words under pressure.”