(If you can’t recite Philippians 4:13 without Googling it first, you’re not a real fan of MMA. / Photo via FightParrot)
Dustin Holyko is not a racist or a criminal. He’s just a regular guy with an “SS” lightning-bolt tattoo on his back, “WHITE PRIDE” inked on his biceps, and one of the longest rap sheets outside of Krazy Horse Bennett. That’s basically the story that Holyko is sticking to in the wake of his firing from World Series of Fighting.
In case you haven’t been following this story, here’s the basic outline: On Saturday, the World Series of Fighting 11 NBC broadcast included a prelim bout between local Florida fighter Dustin Holyko and Neiman Gracie; Holyko lost by second-round submission. After noticing his unfortunate tattoos, BloodyElbow’s Brent Brookhouse did some digging and learned that Holyko had been arrested for everything from domestic battery (three times!) to animal cruelty, and is currently on probation for an “escape” charge in 2012, according to the Florida Department of Corrections.
Apparently, World Series of Fighting knew none of this before they booked Holyko, who was hired sight-unseen, without any sort of background check. After the controversy went public, WSOF immediately cut ties with the fighter, and released the following statement to Sherdog:
“Honestly, we were not aware of Dustin Holyko’s criminal record or any potentially offensive tattoos prior to him competing at WSOF 11. He was licensed by the Florida commission prior to the fight, and it was his third professional fight under their jurisdiction. That said, with the information that has since come to light, we immediately elected to terminate our relationship with Mr. Holyko.”
Sherdog adds that Holyko had been charged with 16 criminal offenses in total, according to public records, and that he’d been arrested as recently as April 23rd due to a probation violation. But of course, none of those arrests are Holyko’s fault — and neither are the offensive tattoos. Here are some quotes from a new MMAJunkie interview with Holyko, which paints the fighter as a standup guy who you’d be happy to bring home to mom…