A US Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) athlete has said he thinks the sport is ready to see a gay champion who can ‘beat the shit out of somebody.’
Joseph Benavidez, who was a UFC Flyweight tournament runner-up in 2012, made the statement when being questioned about gay athletes in the UFC, and whether they would be accepted.
Benavidez said he would welcome a gay athlete into the sport, as it would be a way of breaking down barriers.
‘It would be cool to see a gay guy just beat the shit out of somebody’ he said.
‘I think that would be that much cooler. Busting a stereotype.’
Fellow UFC athlete Phil Davis also said he would support a gay competitor.
‘It's the same as any sport’ he said.
‘I don't see why not. I would not think any less of anyone that did so. It has nothing to do with their capabilities inside the cage.’
However, two other athletes, Jon Jones and Luke Rockhold, refused to answer the question reports Outsports.
‘I don't really know what I think about homosexuality and MMA’ said Jones.
‘I've never really put much thought into it. It's a very sensitive topic. I'd rather not even comment on it.’
Being openly gay in sports has been somewhat of a hot topic of late, especially when openly gay NFL player Michael Sam was drafted to the St Louis Rams this month.
While many congratulated him on the achievement, more conservative commentators thought it was pushing a gay agenda.