Phil Hawes Apologizes Following Verbal Spat with Daniel Cormier at UFC Austin

Phil Hawes UFC
Phil Hawes, UFC 268 Official Weigh-In Credit: Gabriel Gonzalez/Cageside Press

For a moment, things looked like they might get ugly between Phil Hawes and Daniel Cormier at UFC Austin.

When Cormier, a former UFC double champ at heavyweight and light heavyweight who now serves as an analyst, entered the octagon to interview Hawes on Saturday, “Megatron” was initially having none of it. Hawes had just defeated Cormier’s teammate Deron Winn, and hollered at DC, shouting “you picked the wrong pony!”

That left ex-champ Cormier baffled, as he pointed out “I don’t pick fights.”

“Be respectful,” Cormier could be overheard saying during the commercial break. “You didn’t beat me.”

At one point, referee Herb Dean moved between the two. But cooler heads prevailed, and Cormier conducted the post-fight interview with Hawes without further incident.

Backstage following the event, Hawes explained it was simply a misunderstanding.

“Yeah, it was just a misunderstanding on my behalf,” Hawes explained during his post-fight media appearance (h/t MMA Fighting). “‘DC’ is such a role model to me, [he’s] a two-weight world champion, just a stellar dude. So it was just a miscommunication. Wrong place, wrong time.

“I apologize, ‘DC.’ Don’t beat me up,” Hawes finished.

With the win over Deron Winn, Hawes (12-3) bounced back from a knockout loss at the hands of Chris Curtis last year. The second-round TKO also earned him a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus — one of nine on the UFC Austin card, after the promotion opted to reward every fight who finished their bout early on Saturday.