Mario Yamasaki Was Not Responsible For Iconic ‘Be A Warrior’ Comment

Years after being banned from the UFC, referee Mario Yamasaki is clarifying his most iconic comments.

Yamasaki spent the better part of two decades serving as the third man in the Octagon for some of the biggest fights in UFC history. Known for always throwing up a heart with his hands before fights, he played a part in some of the most important bouts in the history of the sport.

via Instagram @yamasakimma

Mario Yamasaki Blames PR For Warrior Comments

The other thing that Mario Yamasaki is known for is being banned from referring UFC fights by Dana White, after the bout between Valentina Shevchenko and Priscila Cachoeira, in which the general consensus was that the fight went on way too long, leading to Cachoeira taking more punishment than what some saw as necessary.

Following this fight, Yamasaki got criticized by many, particularly Dana White, for saying that he was giving Cachoeira a chance to be a warrior, a line which has gone on to live in infamy, being brought up any time there is a questionable stoppage.

However, the veteran referee explained in a recent interview with Talkin’ MMA, that it was actually a PR company that he was working with at the time, which told him to say that line.

“I had public relations back then, and they told me say that, and I said it, you know, to let her be a warrior, blah blah, blah. That became the focus point (for White),” Yamasaki said. “Then I think he stopped saying bad things about referees and judges, because if he keeps fighting everybody, he’s not going to have anybody there. So they told him to (stop), because otherwise he is going to destroy the game.”

If this is the case, it is rather unfortunate for Mario Yamasaki that arguably his most iconic moment and one that contributed to him no longer refereeing in the UFC, was not even his own idea. Nevertheless, he seems to be content and happy with how things have turned out,after all this time away from the sport.

Do you think Mario Yamasaki got treated fairly by the UFC?

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