Joe Rogan, longtime UFC broadcaster, will no longer call to action at UFC 271 on Saturday.
Aaron Bronsterter of TSN confirmed that Rogan would not be at the event because of “schedule conflicts.” He is still scheduled to appear at UFC 272 in March. Rogan is set to comment alongside Jon Anik and Daniel Cormier, but former UFC middleweight champion Michael Bisping will replace him.
Bisping posted a video on social media of him sitting on the plane with the caption ” [Houston]”confirm switch.
– michael (@bisping) February 11, 2022
The abrupt change comes at a time when Rogan is mired in controversy stemming from his podcast, “The Joe Rogan Experience.” There was a backlash about the guest on his show spreading misinformation about COVID-19 and vaccines. Several popular musicians, including Neil Young and Joni Mitchell, have canceled their work on Spotify in protest.
Rogan has also faced criticism after old footage showing him using racial slurs multiple times recently surfaced online. When Dana White was asked about Rogan’s situation, UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya jumped in and defended 54-year-old Rogan.
“I’ve been in this fighting game since 2008 and Joe Rogan is one of the most beautiful, the most amazing, the most humble moms – I’m a joy to work with, understand that,” Adesanya said at UFC 271 pre-match press conference.
“The Joe Rogan Experience” has over 11 million subscribers on YouTube and a very active following on Spotify. Rogan has more than eight million followers on Twitter.
The main event of UFC 271 will feature Adesanya defending the middleweight title against Robert Whittaker.