Brian Ortega Issues, Then Deletes, Statement on UFC 248 Incident

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Brian Ortega UFC
Brian Ortega Credit: Dave Mandel/Sherdog.com

Brian Ortega issued a statement on social media regarding an incident with the Korean Zombie’s translator and platinum recording artist Jay Park on Saturday at UFC 248. Only to delete it shortly after.

UFC featherweight contender Brian Ortega issued a statement Monday evening regarding an altercation at UFC 248, where he slapped Korean recording artist Jay Park. The pop star had previously served as a translator for “The Korean Zombie” Chan Sung Jung for his appearance on Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show.

As has been well-documented, Ortega reportedly confronted Park at UFC 248 while Jung was in the bathroom.  After confirming that he was speaking to Park, Ortega reportedly struck the artist open-handed before being separated and escorted away from the situation by security.  While the incident was reported to authorities, Park has not pressed charges to date.

In a statement since deleted from his social media accounts, Ortega wrote:

“On May 9, 2018, Jay Park signed Korean Zombie to a management contract under AOMG Entertainment, of which Park is the CEO, and soon after the trash talking began. When I finally made it to Korea for the press conference, KZ approached me with his translator (a real one, not Jay Park) and said, “I want to apologize for the trash talking, it was my management that wants to do it to promote the fight.” I accepted his apology, shook his hand and we had a great press conference. Soon after I tore my knee, and the fight got cancelled. Four weeks ago, KZ and JP, went on Ariel’s show and said I dodged the fight. “Dodging” and “injury” are two separate things, and since I already knew JP was the one writing the script, that’s when I welcomed him to the fight game and warned him to watch his mouth.
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On Saturday night, I slapped three people at the same time. I apologize for slapping the “translator,” and I apologize for slapping the “K-pop star,” but I don’t apologize for slapping the “instigator.”

Ortega accused Park of being responsible for instigating conflict between the two fighters and the inflammatory statements that he was ducking the fight with the Korean Zombie.  Ortega went on to exchange messages on social media with Park following his and Jung’s original interview. In those, Ortega stated that he would slap Park if he ran into him.

On Ariel Helwani’s MMA Show on Monday, Park stated that he at no point ever put words in the mouth of Jung.  He reiterated that he has great respect for MMA fighters and that he only translated what Jung stated.  While he admits to encouraging Jung to be more outspoken, he claimed all statements were made by the fighter and that he never told him what to say.

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