UFC heavyweight champion does LGBT+ outreach after using anti-gay slur

Former UFC heavyweight champion Fabricio Werdum has said he will undertake an LGBT+ community outreach project after using an anti-gay slur.

Werdum used the word “maricon”, a Spanish derogatory term for a gay man in a heated exchange with UFC lightweight Tony Ferguson.

The term is comparable to the word “f*ggot” in English.

Fabricio Werdum

CURITIBA, BRAZIL – MAY 13: (L-R) Opponents Fabricio Werdum of Brazil and Stipe Miocic of the United States face off during the UFC 198 weigh-in at Arena da Baixada stadium on May 13, 2016 in Curitiba, Brazil. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)

The exchange took place on Thursday during a media launch for UFC 216.

“Shut your mouth, you f*cking f****t,” Werdum said in Spanish.

“Don’t talk to me like that, that’s not how it works. You can talk like that to your division but with me you can’t talk like that f****t.”

Werdum has since apologised for using the word “maricon”, and said he “did not mean to offend anyone”.

He tweeted: “Maricon is common word in the Spanish culture and I do not mean to offend anyone in the LBG community and if I did I’m apologetic #heeyy.”

The UFC has also released a statement saying that the 40-year-old, who won his titled in 2015, will now undertake a community outreach project.

The statement read: “The UFC organisation is disappointed with recent comments made by Fabricio Werdum at a promotional event in Los Angeles. The nature and implication of his comments do not reflect UFC’s views and will not be tolerated, no matter the manner in which they are used.

“We acknowledge and appreciate that Fabricio has since apologised to the organization and to anyone he may have offended with his words. As high profile athletes, role models, and global ambassadors of the sport of Mixed Martial Arts, athletes under contract with UFC are required to abide by the Athlete Conduct Policy. Given his breach of this policy, Fabricio has agreed to perform community outreach within the LGBTQ community in Las Vegas, taking steps to enact change and make a direct impact within the community.”

Earlier this year a UFC fighter proposed to her girlfriend swiftly after a brutal fight.

UFC Jessica Andrade pre-fight

UFC Jessica Andrade pre-fight 2

Last year, Amanda Nunes became the UFC’s first out gay champion when she beat Miesha Tate in a first round submission in UFC 200.

She spoke about her girlfriend Nina Ansaroff during her victory speech, saying: “Nina is the best training partner I have in my life.”