TUF Nations contestant barred from UFC contract
February 11, 2014
MMA Junkie reports that TUF Nations contestant Tyler Manawaroa will not be offered a UFC contract regardless of his place or performance on the show according to a statement by the UFC released on Monday.
Manawaroa, a part of Team Australia, posted a racially insensitive photo on his Instagram account. The revelation came after it was pointed out by a fellow TUF contestant from Team Canada. Curiously, the photo on Instagram includes comments which attempt to alert the UFC and Dana White via “@ufc” and “@danawhite.” It should be noted that it appears White’s Instagram is @danawhiteufc. Regardless, the UFC indicated that it was not aware of the photo prior to allowing Manawaroa onto the show as a contestant.
The UFC statement via Junkie:
The UFC organization had hired an investigation company in Australia to conduct thorough background investigations on potential contestants for ‘The Ultimate Fighter Nations’ television series. Unfortunately, the background checks did not uncover all of the social media history by contestant Tyler Manawaroa. The UFC is committed to having an environment that is free from discrimination. Consequently, UFC has notified Manawaroa that regardless of how far he advances in the completed television series, the organization will not be offering him a contract to compete in the UFC.
An appropriate action by the UFC, but the explanation appears to pass off blame for the oversight. Certainly, it appears from the comment section of the IG picture that posters attempted to contact UFC or Dana White. Yet, the UFC claims that it had no idea about the posts on social media. For any company, background checks are essential and unless the IG pic was deleted after initial posting, it should have been discovered by the investigation company and/or the UFC. For the UFC’s image, Manawaroa cannot compete in the UFC. The problem is what happens if he appears to be the best fighter on the show and then is not permitted to compete in the Finale? Should they have just kicked him off the show once this information was discovered?
This incident as well as the Jessica Eye situation reflects the need for a review of social media standards and practices.