Cedric Doumbe called out powerful coach for domestic abuse, now he and his ex-wife are responding

MMA star in the making Cedric Doumbe has taken aim at Fernand Lopez, making serious allegations against his former coach.

By: Tim Bissell | 2 months ago
Cedric Doumbe called out powerful coach for domestic abuse, now he and his ex-wife are responding
IMAGO/Rayane Jandau

Cedric Doumbe is for real

Cedric Doumbe did his best to show the world MMA was still around this past weekend, while most other promotions were hibernating and letting Canelo Alvarez soak up all the spotlight. Doumbe was in action, headlining PFL Europe 3, in Paris, France.

And with no UFC, or any other major promotion around, Doumbe made the most of his opportunity to scoop MMA headlines.

In the main event of PFL Europe 3 he took just nine seconds to floor Jordan Zebo with a punch that looked like a love tap, but must have felt like a sledgehammer. At the event Doumbe showed he’s not just a superb fighter, but a bit of a showman, too. Before the bout he brought a mattress to the cage, which was daubed with “Goodnight Jordan”.

The win took Doumbe’s MMA record to 5-0, with all his wins coming via KO and TKO. The 31-year-old is famed for his kickboxing record of 75-7-1 and his time as GLORY welterweight champion.

Cedric Doumbe used his time in spotlight to call out Fernand Lopez

Cedric Doumbe is a former member of Paris’ MMA Factory. That gym is run by Fernand Lopez, who is most known for taking Francis Ngannou under his wing when the future UFC heavyweight champ was sleeping rough on the streets.

Ngannou would split from Lopez during his UFC tenure. And he has not been too kind about his former coach whenever asked about the split.

After his win over Zebo, who is still a member of Lopez’s MMA Factory, Doumbe called out his old coach for violence against women.

“In France, I’m a big part of associations fighting against domestic violence,” Doumbe said (ht MMA Fighting). “So it’s not a secret that I don’t like Fernand Lopez, people know that. People really didn’t know why I don’t like him. It’s been maybe one, two, three, four, five years I didn’t want to talk about this story because I wanted to protect that woman. That woman is my nutritionist, so I didn’t want to expose her. I just want to protect her, because she doesn’t deserve exposure like that. But it’s the emotion with the emotion, I just want to show to the people it just comes out.

“I just told them that it’s not about Jordan. … [Lopez] got arrested for that. This type of thing makes me almost want to cry, because I really don’t like this type of stuff. That’s why I left his gym because even in the gym, everybody knew that story, but no one moves. I didn’t like the atmosphere in the gym, the mood, that’s why I left, because I cannot work with a man like that. So I just wanted to share my feelings with the crowd. I didn’t do it on purpose, it just comes out.”

Fernand Lopez and his ex-wife have responded to Cedric Doumbe’s comments

Fernand Lopez responded to Cedric Doumbe’s comments in Le Parisien. In that outlet he disclosed that five years ago he was sentenced to four months in prison for domestic violence. More of what Lopez said can be found, in English, via Al Zullino below.

Lopez’s ex-wife then responded to the statements from both Lopez and Doumbe. She wrote online that “it was impossible not to react to so many lies” in the Le Parisian article. She went on to claim she lost consciousness twice as a result of actions taken by Lopez and that her young daughter had to wake her up from these incidents.

She went on to claim that Lopez was intending to use his sway in the media, and the sport of MMA, to distort what happened between them.

“He knows [what happened] and abuses this dominant position over me, over the media, and over the entire MMA sphere, which is also my sphere,” she wrote. “But at some point, I just can’t take these attacks and this nonsense anymore. So my intention is not to victimize myself; I made choices, they concern me and belong to me. I’m not writing this to bring him down either; he does that very well on his own.”

Doumbe later appeared on The MMA Hour, claiming Lopez’s ex-wife had sent him a message thanking him for what he said after his win over the weekend.

Cedric Doumbe on the MMA Hour

Opinion: Domestic abusers have a safe haven in combat sports

Another day, another story about domestic abuse in combat sports. I didn’t know when I started writing about MMA in 2016 I would become so familiar with family violence. Though, since then, there are simply too many incidents of abuse involving characters in MMA, boxing and wrestling to list.

In some sports this behaviour, whether past or present, would be unacceptable and lead to lengthy suspensions, if not total excommunication.

However, in combat sports domestic abuse is sadly par for the course. It will remain that way until individuals, regardless of their status in the sport, are disiplined for abusing their domestic and intimate partners. That discipline can only come from the powerful stakeholders who run the fight game.

As we saw in January, we are a long way from this kind of accountability. That’s when UFC CEO Dana White was captured on camera slapping his wife in the face at least two times at a club in Cabo, Mexico. White received zero punishment (or even admonishment) for this act from the UFC’s official broadcaster (ESPN) or UFC and TKO owner Ari Emmanuel.

The longer these kinds of acts go unpunished in the sport, the longer the architects of combat sports demonstrate that women and children are acceptable casualties in the offensive to make as much money as possible from people beating each other in the head.

Support for survivors of domestic violence can be found from the following organizations:

USA – The National Domestic Violence Hotline: 1-800-799-SAFE (7233)

Canada – DAWN-RAFH Canada

UK and Ireland – Women’s Aid: 0808-2000-247

Rest of the World – HotPeachPages

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About the author
Tim Bissell
Tim Bissell

Tim Bissell is a writer, editor and deputy site manager for Bloody Elbow. He has covered combat sports since 2015. Tim covers news and events and has also written longform and investigative pieces. Among Tim's specialties are the intersections between crime and combat sports. Tim has also covered head trauma, concussions and CTE in great detail.

Tim is also BE's lead (only) sumo reporter. He blogs about that sport here and on his own substack, Sumo Stomp!

Email me at tim@bloodyelbow.com. Nice messages will get a response.

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