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6-Time 'MMA Journalist Of The Year' Removed From UFC 199 At Forum, 'Banned For Life'

INGLEWOOD ( — A veteran mixed martial arts reporter says his credentials were revoked from a UFC fight over his report that WWE star and former UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar was close to fighting again for the organization at an upcoming bout, UFC 200.

After breaking that news,'s Ariel Helwani said Saturday night on Twitter that he, photographer Esther Lin and video director E. Casey Leydon were removed from the UFC 199.

Helwani later said on Twitter that he was only reporting the news and didn't do anything unethical in reporting his Lesnar scoop.

He said he and his colleagues were told they were "banned for life."

The organization later announced that Lesnar would fight at UFC 200 in Las Vegas next month.

UFC spokesman Dave Sholler says professional standards dictate that journalists are to contact the UFC for comment before reporting a story.

Helwani was recently removed from his role as a UFC reporter for Fox. He was named UFC Journalist of the Year in 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 and 2015 at the World MMA Awards.

He said he was hoping for "cooler heads [to] prevail" and expressed his admiration for the sport.

(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2015 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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