Cody Durden’s first UFC win will be remembered, but likely for all the wrong reasons.
The 30-year-old Georgia native defeated Qileng Aori on Saturday, winning a hard-fought unanimous decision on the preliminary card of UFC Vegas 43. It was Durden’s first octagon victory in three appearances, however much of the reaction to the fight online stemmed not from Durden’s performance, but from what the American said in his post-fight interview.
“I knew he was going to be tough but I had to send him back to China, where he came from,” Durden said of Aori to UFC commentator Daniel Cormier.
The remarks were instantly met by scattered boos and an otherwise stunned silence inside the UFC’s APEX facility.
“You say that, I take the microphone, Fitzy,” a chuckling Cormier told fellow commentator Brendan Fitzgerald seconds later. “I have nothing else to do there.”
Durden’s comments drew instant criticism from many of his peers online, which can be seen below.
FUCK CODY DURDEN! Racism is never cool POS #ufcvegas43— Casey Oneill (@kingcaseymma) November 20, 2021
Well that dudes a cunt. #ufcvegas43— Julian marquez (@JMarquezMMA) November 20, 2021
Wow way to shit on your own performance smh!!! Way to comfort say that ignorant shit!!!#UFCVegas43 #tryingtohard— Jamahal Hill (@JamahalH) November 20, 2021
I guess he won't be getting those IG followers now. Ouch. #forgivemyfriendhesdrunk #UFCVegas43— Din Thomas (@DinThomas) November 20, 2021
Such a bozo smh— Belal Muhammad (@bullyb170) November 20, 2021
I don’t like Cody Durden racist comment in his interview. Should I smash this guy for my UFC debut? @UFCEurope @ufc— Muhammad Mokaev (@muhammadmokaev) November 20, 2021
Dudes a real POS, I’ll gladly punch him in the face!! https://t.co/McLXd8puSh— Jeff Molina (@jmolina_125) November 20, 2021
Cody Durden making white people look dumb again— Jared Gordon (@JFlashGordonMMA) November 20, 2021
Durden is like the flyweight Colby, if Colby had 0 striking and ground game— Brandon (@brandonroyval) November 20, 2021
Cody Durden, that’s a quick way to lose any fans you may have had. Idiot. #UFCVegas43— Sean Madden (@seanMFmadden) November 20, 2021
Durden, however, was undeterred. He defended his comments in his post-fight media scrum and challenged any of his critics to step up and fight him.
“If they don’t like it, do something,” Durden said. “Sign the contract. It doesn’t matter to me. I said what I said and it is what it is.”
Durden (12-3-1) lost via first-round submission to Jimmy Flick and fought to a draw against Chris Gutierrez in his prior two UFC appearances.
UFC Vegas 43 took place Nov. 20 in Las Vegas.