Nothing hoarded the headlines more this week than the TMZ Sports video showing now-former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice knocking his now-wife unconscious with a left hook inside of a New Jersey casino elevator.
Prior to Monday’s footage being leaked, Rice was suspended merely two games by the NFL because commissioner Roger Goddell claims he hadn’t seen this specific clip prior to TMZ releasing it. The Ravens immediate cut Rice and the NFL indefinitely suspended him after TMZ’s video went viral.
Interestingly, the UFC just re-signed light heavyweight Thiago Silva last weekend following his arrest for allegedly pulling a gun on his wife because those charges have since been dropped.
From a PR perspective, would the UFC’s decision have been different had Rice’s video leaked prior to their decision to bring Silva back? Not so much, says UFC president Dana White.
“First of all, the video is horrifying, absolutely horrifying,” White said on Wednesday’s edition of Fox Live Live of Rice’s attack. “You’re talking about a guy who’s been in the fight business since he was 19 years old, it is the most disturbing thing you will ever see. The thing that is just as bad as the punch is that he shows no remorse after he does it. If he did something in anger, you go, ‘Oh my God, what did I do?’ There’s none of that with this guy.
“I don’t know all the ins and outs of what Roger Goodell did, or knew, or how it was handled, but it’s definitely bad. I could tell you this, I wouldn’t want to be Roger Godell. The video is just so horrifying. It’s a tough one. If Roger Goodell saw that video, knew that was what happened, knew that Ray Rice did that to his wife or his fiancée or whatever it is, he should just get up and leave on his own.”
According to White, the difference between Rice’s situation and Silva’s is that Silva was acquitted of his charges. Oh, and more importantly, nobody caught his alleged violent act on tape.
“If you believe in the legal process – they came, they arrested him and he wasn’t brought up on any charges,” White said of Silva. “Plus, I know a lot more of the story and what went on, and if you take his side of the story, her side of the story, the truth lies somewhere in the middle. But he went through the process and he wasn’t charged with anything.
“The guy should have the ability to make a living. And obviously, if some tape surfaces, like in this one, but the police have already investigated this entire thing and they let the guy go.”
Silva was arrested in Florida n February after supposedly pulling a gun on his wife at the Pablo Popovitch Mixed Martial Arts Academy. Silva then fled to his nearby home and barricaded himself inside while police and SWAT set up a perimeter around his house. After a standoff with officers that lasted a few hours, Silva eventually surrendered without incident.
The charges were recently dropped because his wife was “uncooperative” with law enforcement. It was reported that she left the country and couldn’t assist in their investigation.