One of the most well-known executives in the UFC is departing the promotion.
UFC senior vice president of public relations and athlete marketing and development Dave Sholler is leaving for a job with the NBA's Philadelphia 76ers, he confirmed Wednesday night. UFC president Dana White broke the news on FS1's TUF Talk show.
Sholler, a New Jersey native, is a lifelong fan of the 76ers. His last event will be UFC 205 on Nov. 12 in New York.
Sholler tweeted about his tough decision Wednesday night.
It's time to go home, to the organization I grew up rooting for. Will miss fight game very, very much, but excited for the new challenge.— Dave Sholler (@DaveSholler) October 13, 2016
Sholler became a part of Zuffa, the UFC's parent organization, in 2009 as a public relations executive for WEC. He came over to the UFC following the promotion's merger with WEC in 2010.
Since then, he has become a high-profile figure in the world of mixed martial arts, working as the go-to guy for the sport's media and in a leadership role of the UFC's athlete development wing.
Sholler has hosted countless press conferences in the stead of White, including one in 2014 in which he became an internet meme. Sholler tried unsuccessfully to get between Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier at an MGM Grand press event and was tossed aside, knocking over the event's backdrop. He took the incident in stride and it became a running gag in the UFC.
The departure follows a topsy turvy few months for the UFC. The promotion was sold for more than $4 billion to WME-IMG in July, leading to the departure of longtime CEO Lorenzo Fertitta, who bought the UFC with his brother Frank and White in 2001. Matchmaker Joe Silva, a part of the UFC even before the Zuffa days, will be retiring at the end of the year. Meanwhile, business has never been better from a financial standpoint.