By Lance LeVan
Anyone who keeps up with MMA, or more to the point, the UFC, has heard this week’s news about one of the UFC’s fighters getting their contract terminated. Tiago Silva was arrested this past Friday on two counts of attempted murder, aggravated battery with a deadly weapon and obstruction without violence, as reported by NBC Miami. Miami SWAT was called to go in and get him out of his house, where he had barricaded himself. Within a very short time, UFC president Dana White announced that they were terminating his contract and that “This guy will never fight in the UFC again.”
My question is this: Why aren’t all major league sports organizations doing the same thing? I’m not a huge fan of some of the things that Dana White does…but this is right on the money. Mr. White is drawing a very clear line in the sand about this. You can’t act like Mr. Silva did and not expect for there to be ramifications. In this case, immediate and severe ramifications. Now, I’m not saying that all the other UFC fighters are angels… cause I’m not. But for the most part, most of them are not being charged with multiple, high-level felonies. I think that sports figures, regardless of their respective sport, should be held to a higher standard of behavior in public. It is this writer’s opinion that if you are a professional sports figure and you get caught with a concealed firearm and cocaine in your bag on a flight …then you should get your contract terminated and not have any recourse on being compensated. Why aren’t the team owners and their lawyers, not making this a mandatory part of all contract negotiations? It is tough enough for me to teach my children about right and wrong. But then they see college athletes taking money from boosters or they hear about how the courts let an NFL player get away with drug, firearm or murder charges.
I wish ALL professional sports teams would follow the same path that Dana White is blazing. If you screw up and make his organization look bad…YOU’RE FIRED!