Makdessi looks to clear his name after Fear the Fighter fiasco, was ‘never involved in the business’

John Makdessi may have earned one of the more impressive victories on the UFC 186 card, but the win will be tainted with a…

By: Karim Zidan | 8 years ago
Makdessi looks to clear his name after Fear the Fighter fiasco, was ‘never involved in the business’
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

John Makdessi may have earned one of the more impressive victories on the UFC 186 card, but the win will be tainted with a looming lawsuit against him and the MMA apparel brand of which he is listed as president.

Over the past few months, several fighters have accused Fear the Fighter of not paying them for sponsorships. The most prominent amongst them is Gegard Mousasi, who filed a lawsuit against Makdessi, his brother David, and the brand ahead of the lightweight’s UFC 186 match-up against Shane Campbell.

However, while Makdessi is technically the company’s president, he claims that he has never been involved with the business side.

“I’m tired of people pointing fingers at me,” Makdessi said. “I just wanted to clear that up. I was never involved in the business. They sponsored me, my brother helped me, took care of my sponsorship, he helped with the management side of my career, that’s it. That was my only involvement with Fear the Fighter.”

“I was never involved in the business aspect of Fear the Fighter. Yes, my older brother David Makdessi, yes I was part of Fear the Fighter. I was the inspiration behind it. But the whole team, there was so many people involved in Fear the Fighter, a lot of parties.”

While he claimed no part in the ongoing controversy, Makdessi also suggested that other parties could be at fault as well.

“The fighters are yelling and screaming out numbers,” said Makdessi, who was not sponsored by FTF for UFC 186. “But we don’t know what the managers are doing, you know how it is in this business. The business, can be, a lot of people are not telling the truth. People are throwing out numbers and pointing fingers. I understand, it’s the name of the game, people want to blame people. I understand that. I’m a fighter. I know it’s a lot of sting behind it. That being said, it’s very unfortunate what’s happened with all the fighters and there’s a lot of speculation, but I just want to clear my name.

“I can’t speak for my brother or any other person, all I can do is speak for myself. I was a sponsored athlete, I was never a part of the business. That was my part.”

Transcription taken from MMAFighting.com.

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About the author
Karim Zidan
Karim Zidan

Karim Zidan is a investigative reporter and feature writer focusing on the intersection of sports and politics. He has written for BloodyElbow since 2014 and has served as an associate editor since 2016. He also writes for The New York Times and The Guardian. Karim has been invited to speak about his work at numerous universities, including Princeton, and was a panelist at the South by Southwest (SXSW) film festival and the Oslo Freedom Forum. He also participated in the United Nations counter-terrorism conference in 2021. His reporting on Ramzan Kadyrov’s involvement in MMA, much of which was done for Bloody Elbow, has led to numerous award nominations, and was the basis of an award-winning HBO Real Sports documentary.

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