Will Chope released from UFC in light of bitter past, bout vs. Diego Brandao cancelled

Long time Asian MMA staple Will Chope (19-6) was given his walking papers today just hours before his bout with Diego Brandao at UFC Fight Night 38 in Natal, Brazil, after some unpleasant reports of the 23-year-old surfaced online.

Globo first reported the cancellation of the Featherweight fight following a report on Bleacher Report, which revealed several alarming details on Chope’s past.

The Bleacher Report article brought an Air Force Court of Appeals document to light, that detailed Chope’s military conviction from the Air Force after instances of verbal and physical assaults on his now ex-wife in 2009, back when he was just 18-years-old.

As a result, not only was the fight canceled, Chope was cut from the promotion as well. The organization stated that Brandao would receive his both show and win money.

The 23-year-old learnt of his fight cancellation upon running into Jon Anik and Brian Stann, and got the news of his discharge from the promotion via Twitter.

“Tonight’s featherweight bout between Will Chope and Diego Brandao has been canceled after UFC officials were made aware of Chope’s previous military conviction,” the UFC stated in a press release. “The UFC does not condone behavior of this nature whatsoever and Chope has been released from his contract.”

Prior to that statement, Chope posted the following message on his Facebook page:

I fight today. But I just want to make a small post about what has been brought up last night. I made some mistakes in my past. The incidents happened 5 years ago and I will live with them for the rest of my life. But I just want everyone to know the articles are being sensationalized right now and me and my ex wife have spoken about this and we would like everyone to know that we are friends now and have moved on and are different people and are just trying to be good parents to our daughter. She also made a post on her personal page she is allowing me to share. I will make a formal address to this issue after the fight, but I hope this is suffice until then.”

He later posted this message after learning his fight had been scratched from the card:

“My fight has been canceled for a 5 year old mistake I made. I am truly sorry to all the fans and will do everything I can to make this right. I have spoken with my ex-wife on the phone and she supports what I am doing and together we will make a formal press release as soon as I get back to the USA on Wednesday.”

Chope made his promotional debut in January at UFC Fight Night 34, dropping a second TKO defeat to Max Holloway. He has primarily competed in Asia, amassing over twenty contests in the region alone.


Thinesh John is a Singapore-based MMA writer. You can check out some of his work over on MMASucka.com. Follow him (@ThineshJohnMMA), and be sure keep up with the latest Asian MMA news from FightSportAsia.com on Twitter (@FightSportAsia) and Facebook


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Categories: Featured, MMA, UFC

Author:Thinesh John

20, Asian MMA nerd in Singapore.


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