Asia’s highest-ranked mixed martial artist said fighters must remember they’re idols for children as he slammed last week’s “shocking” scenes after Conor McGregor’s defeat to Khabib Nurmagomedov.
Chan 'The Korean Zombie' Sung-jung said the post-fight violence, when Nurmagomedov and his team attacked McGregor and his team, had set back attempts to clean up MMA’s image.
“We should be inspiring kids and not shocking them,” the Seoul-based featherweight said ahead of this week’s Angel’s Fighting MMA event in Seoul, where all profits pay medical expenses for terminally-ill children.
“As martial artists we are role models,” added Chan, who is ranked 10th in the world by the UFC in his weight division.
“Hyping up the fight is understandable but violence outside the cage is a no-go. We are adults and should remember the impact what we do has on kids.”
Chan was speaking at his Korean Zombie Gym in Seoul as he prepared to fly out for his next fight, against the UFC’s former champion and third-ranked featherweight Frankie 'The Answer' Edgar.
The bout will be the top attraction of the UFC’s 25th-anniversary fight card in Denver on November 10, reflecting Chan’s stature and the sport’s global reach.
If he finds a way past the Edgar, the Korean fighter is expected to get a shot at the featherweight title - and the chance to become the UFC’s first Asian world champion.
“Fighters are emerging from all over Asia, and from South Korea,” said Chan. “The image of the sport has improved and it is up to us as martial artists to make sure this continues.”