Much like Michael Bisping, Mark Hunt has made something of a career out of fighting people who have either failed drug tests or incriminated themselves over potential PED use at some point in their career.
Maybe that comes as no surprise for a guy who spent his early MMA years in PRIDE, but things have hardly been better in the UFC. Whether it’s his debut against Sean McCorkle, subsequent fights with Ben Rothwell and Antonio Silva, or his most recent run against Frank Mir, Brock Lesnar, and Alistair Overeem, half of Hunt’s fights in the Octagon carry the specter of potential unsanctioned drug use.
And following his loss to Lesnar at UFC 200, the ‘Super Samoan’ made it clear to the UFC that he’d had enough of fighting potential cheaters without compensation. He took the UFC, Lesnar, and Dana White to court with the intention of getting a little of his own back.
Now with a hearing date looming, Hunt spoke to Sub Radio about the state of his legal actions and of his intentions to carry them through to the end, whatever that may be.
“No, nothing’s happened,” Hunt said, following earlier comments that the UFC might “fire me today or tomorrow”. “I’m just putting it out there and saying, you know, I mean, you said they might fire me, well that’s just the way it is with work.”
“All I was doing without suing, I asked first if this could be rectified another way. They wouldn’t. They didn’t want to do it. So then I had no choice but to push forward with my legal thing, with my lawyer, cause I’ve had no choice. I’m not gonna keep fighting juicers. Why should I? Why should I be fighting juicers my whole career? I’ve done it most of my career. And they say, ‘well, you knew.’ Well how the fuck am I supposed to know this shit? That’s rubbish. That’s just a lame excuse. It’s a lame excuse for these freaking guys to keep cheating and getting away with it. It’s a lame cop-out and I think it’s bullshit. They shouldn’t be allowed to do that. And they’re saying I’m bad because I’m suing them, well what am I supposed to do? Shut my mouth and keep working and fighting juicers until my head comes off?”
“Three times in a row. Three times in a row (I fought fighters who failed drug tests). I mean, anyone would ask the question. You know, three guys in a row and then it would have been a fourth guy if I fought in Melbourne against Josh Barnett. Why do I keep getting the short end of the stick? Why should I? I shouldn’t have to accept this rubbish. And I don’t give a fuck about all these people saying to me, ‘aww Mark, you just keep whinging and complaining, man.’ Fuck you, man. You don’t know shit. None of you motherfuckers ever do that – fighting against juice heads. You don’t know what it’s like. You get injured, there goes your whole year of pay, you fuckin’, you might lose an eye. I didn’t sign up to fight juice heads, otherwise they should have a competition for them – for the juice heads and the non-juice heads”
And while the UFC did take steps to punish Lesnar for failing his UFC 200 drug test after his bout with Mark Hunt, their actions haven’t done much of anything to lessen Hunt’s feelings that Lesnar and the UFC have more or less walked away unscathed from the whole ordeal.
“Well, I mean, the only reason the suspension was like that is because at the end of the day, like I said, if someone gets badly injured or dies, do you think that would have been enough?” Hunt asked when questioned about Lesnar’s suspension from MMA and return to the WWE. “I don’t think so. I think the public would have been like – well let’s just say for instance, if I would have lost my life fighting the juice monkey, if I would have lost my life, would that quarter of a million dollars and two-year ban, would it have been enough? Someone’s lost their life here. I don’t think so, man. I don’t think that’s the case. And the way that things went, I mean, that guy getting an exemption, the four-month exemption. Why is that? I mean, why is these little freaking things allowed to happen? I mean, who gives someone an exception coming off fighting and coming from the WWE? I mean, he should be checked. And like I said, all I thought he was clean and this could have been sorted way before. Like I said, I don’t know what every other fighter thinks, I just think it should be an even playing ground. All I’m fighting for is an even playing ground.”
“Like I said, the reason why I’m asking for his money and everything like this, is because he should be punished for cheating. I said it before, it pays now to be cheating and that’s what it does. He made a lot of money and he walked off laughing. He got a small fine and he didn’t even lose out of his pocket. He paid that fucking fine with the money he made that night. Why should he be allowed? Every other sport, you know, you get your face taken off everything, you lose all your money. Man, why aren’t we punishing these guys?”
“Do I want it to go to discovery? Yeah, of course I want it to go to discovery. Like I said, this shit is going all the way. These guys are gonna have to make this right, and not just with me, but with every fighter’s contract. I want the Mark Hunt clause put in their contract. I want every fighter’s contract to put in – if you are juicing, all their money should go to the other guy. If you’re both juicing, none of you guys should get money. People say, well why don’t you take 80 percent, blah blah blah? I say, okay, so me losing my life is 80 percent worth? No. They shouldn’t get anything. Cheaters don’t deserve any sort of money. He knew. These guys that cheat know that they’re gonna get into a fight three or four months down the track, so they premeditatedly know that they’re gonna fight, so they cheat. So it’s like someone trying to rob a bank. They’re planning it out, they premeditate, they go rob the bank and they get the money. It’s like what these juice heads are doing with fighting.”
With all that said, it sounds like Hunt is more excited to fight Derrick Lewis than he was Allistair Overeem. While Hunt claims that the UFC forced him into the Overeem bout, he explained that he was happy to take the fight against Lewis, saying, “I took the fight because I wanted to fight again. You know, I wanted another fight. Especially in New Zealand. So I’m happy about it. I wasn’t forced to do it like the one against that other steroid head.”
Mark Hunt vs. Derrick Lewis is set to headline UFC Auckland. The fight goes down on June 11th at the Vector Arena in New Zealand.