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UFC 293: Fighter apologizes for calling crowd homophobic slur after debut win

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 10: Charles Radtke reacts after his victory over Blood Diamond of Zimbabwe in a welterweight fight during the UFC 293 event at Qudos Bank Arena on September 10, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Charles Radtke reacted badly to a hostile crowd in Australia. (Photo by Chris Unger/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Charles Radtke began his UFC career with a win and a loss at UFC 293 on Sunday in Sydney.

The win came first, in the more conventional form. The welterweight made his UFC debut with a unanimous decision win over Mike "Blood Diamond" Mathetha to improve his career record to 8-3.

He then sustained the most self-inflicted of wounds during his postfight interview with ESPN's Daniel Cormier, when he reacted to a booing crowd — which was partial to Mathetha, who is based in New Zealand — by calling them a homophobic slur, among other things:

"F*** all you f*****s up in the f***ing crowd. Come down here and get some you p****-ass b****. F*** you."

You can see video here.

A couple hours later, Radtke was posting an apology on social media, calling the slurs "not a reflection of who I am" and blaming his emotions after the win.

Past UFC precedent indicates that Radtke probably doesn't have to worry too much about sanctions from the promotion. Nate Diaz received a $20,000 fine and a three-month suspension for using the same slur on Twitter. UFC president Dana White himself used the word publicly while criticizing a reporter in 2009 and later apologized.

As remorseful as Radtke appeared on social media, the lesson apparently didn't take. Manel Kape, another UFC fighter, used a similar slur to describe a rival's team during an interview on the main card. Kape later apologized.