Ottman Azaitar has been released from the UFC for violating COVID-19 safety protocols on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
Azaitar had to fight Matt Frevola on Saturday at UFC 257, but did not reach the official weigh-in on Friday. The reason was unknown until the UFC announced it was “aware of a recent breach of health and safety protocols, including” Azaitar, which led to the cancellation of his bout.
UFC President Dana White told MMA Junkie’s Farah Hannoun that Azaitar had been fired for his actions and offered details of what happened.
Statement by Dana White on the release of Otman Azaytar.
Full interview for @UFCarabia: https://t.co/I4vfjmbgFC pic.twitter.com/icpVDTs0uS
̵1; Farah Hannoun (@Farah_Hannoun) January 22, 2021
“He and his team cut off their wrists and took them to people outside, one man,” White said. “This man went inside the balloon, went through a room, transferred four balconies, went through the balcony (of Azaitar) and left a bag with we don’t know what. Then he changed his clothes and returned outside the balloon. We took everything in front of the camera, saw the whole thing and how everything collapsed, pulled his battle and cut him off. “
The UFC has confirmed that Azaitar has been removed from the Fight Island safety zone.
The 30-year-old Azaitar is unbeaten overall at 13-0. He started quickly in the UFC, scoring first-round knockouts of Teemu Packalen and Khama Worthy in his first two fights with the promotion, the last of which took place last September.