As it turns out, Muhammed “King Mo” Lawal (Pictured) was in fact released from Strikeforce not because of his nine-month steroid suspension, but for berating a Nevada State Athletic Commission member on his Twitter account shortly after his punishment was rendered.
“Of course I want to fight for Strikeforce and fight for Zuffa, but if they want to cut me for what I said, then I can’t take it back because it already happened,” Lawal told BloodyElbow. “I have never been asked in such a condescending way if I could read or speak English like that. I did something wrong, so I can’t really say I’m being treated unfairly. I don’t know if it was excessive to cut me.”
During Tuesday’s hearing, the former Stikeforce light heavyweight champ was probed about the answers he provided in his pre-fight medical form for his January 7th bout against Lorenz Larkin. That’s when board member Pat Lundvall asked the Tennessee-native if he was able to read and understand the English language.
Although Lawal politely answered in the affirmative, the 31-year-old felt degraded by her questions. Lundvall is Caucasian.
“Right now, I just want people to understand that I went in there respectfully and that I’m not playing the race card. I’m too old to play the race card,” Lawal expressed. “[But] the woman’s comments reminded me of times when I experienced racial insensitivity from other people.
“To me, that was a blatant insult. Just listen to the audio. You’ll see.”
Just hours after the NSAC levied their verdict, which also included a $39,000 fine and having his victory overturned to a no contest, UFC president Dana White issued Lawal his walking papers.
“Zuffa made a decision just off what was said on Twitter. I don’t know if they care about what happened,” Lawal stated. “I’m pretty sure they didn’t hear any of the audio. They just made a decision off what went down on Twitter.
“I’m pretty sure [NSAC executive director] Keith Kizer and certain people at the commission are mad and I didn’t mean any disrespect to Keith or the rest of the people in the commission. I just felt disrespected by that one person that asked if I could speak or read English.”
“King Mo” now finds himself in the unemployment line. However, he shouldn’t have too much trouble finding a home after his ban expires in October.
Here is the audio from yesterday’s hearing (The segment Lawal is irked about begins around the 6:40 mark):