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5 Jan, 2022 17:27

MMA fighter axed after discovery of shocking tattoo

A Czech MMA fighter has been banned from a local fight league event after neo-Nazi symbology was found among his tattoos
MMA fighter axed after discovery of shocking tattoo

Radek Rousal has had his professional MMA debut canceled by Czech organization Oktagon MMA after it was discovered that he had numerous neo-Nazi tattoos, including one of Adolf Hitler on his right arm.

Rousal, who is untested as an MMA pro but has a 0-1 kickboxing record, was in line to make his first appearance in the cage as a short-notice replacement against Slovakian Nikolas Krivak.

However, officials from the fight league were forced to rethink their plans after noticing the offensive ink on Rousal's body at the pre-fight weigh-in. 

His heavily-tattooed body includes an image of a skull wearing an SS cap on the left side of his chest, as well as the image of Hitler on his arm, and was enough to see his MMA debut put on hold – prompting officials from Oktagon MMA to jump into damage control mode.

"It cannot happen that you would come here looking like that," the event's promoter Ondrej Novotny said.

"We have a clause about that in the contract, we could fine him. For the tattoo on his chest as well. No way.

"It’s absolutely justified that there’s an outcry. We didn’t study what he looks like, neither did our photographers or our cameramen notice the tattoo.

"Nobody spoke of it beforehand. We did not know about it, certainly not."

Rousal, for his part, appears to agree and says that he got the tattoos during a troubled period of his life and says that he intends to have them covered over as soon as possible.

"I grew up in the troubled community of people that made this tattoo," he said

"At the time, I didn’t know what to do with life, I was young and this tattoo was stupid. Later, I started doing martial arts, which led me to a completely different life and worldview.

"I have more tattoos that I regret, I gradually remove them all. I also want to apologize with my statement."

For Novotny, this appears to be too little, too late and has led to him being banned from the promotion until further notice.

"I told him he was crazy. I'm not a tattoo expert, but how long can it take to tattoo this? Two days?" he said of Rousal's vow to have the tattoos covered.

"It's nice that he basically distanced himself from it, I trust him and I'm able to understand everything, but not this and it can be done faster. Most importantly, it must be seen. This is not very visible yet."

Rousal's explanation of his background appears to mirror that of UFC middleweight contender Sean Strickland who recently confirmed that he grew up espousing neo-Nazi beliefs before condemning them, and later admitting that he was "ashamed" of his prior character.