UFC reporter Megan Olivi was distraught after being left out of the UFC 260 broadcaster conversation by Stephen A. Smith.
The outspoken sports personality would give a multitude of praise to the likes of Joe Rogan, Daniel Cormier, Jon Anik, Michael Bisping, Chael Sonnen, Michael Eaves, Brett Okamato and Ariel Helwani. One name not included? Pre-fight and post-fight interviewer Megan Olivi.
Olivi would throw her name in the praise hat following the Tweet.
Ummm hey there – you’re forgetting someone 😁
— Megan Olivi (@MeganOlivi) March 28, 2021
Forgive me for bragging, but we’ve got the best @ufc coverage in the world on ESPN+. Ya got @dc_mma, @joerogan & @Jon_Anik cage side. @ChaelSonnen & @bisping providing color. My bro @michaeleaves Hosting post-fight coverage and @bokamotoESPN & @arielhelwani always on scene.
Ummm hey there – you’re forgetting someone
The recurring UFC broadcaster being left out, hit closer to home than most expected.
“That was actually tough for me,” Olivi said during a UFC 261 Q&A. “I don’t love social media in general, but then to play such a big role in terms of pre- and post-fight interviews, like, I’m the one onsite doing them. Then to do all the hits on the broadcast and be a part of this team and literally the only women on the pay-per-view team.
“There’s no other desk host, there’s no one on the pre- or post-show. It’s literally just me. And I’ve worked to be here. I wasn’t handed this. It’s been a very long journey, as people who have seen me 10 years ago I’m sure can attest to. I’ve done everything the right way to get here, and to not get the acknowledgement as my male colleagues got, I genuinely was so hurt. It was nice to see the MMA community have my back on that.”
The long-time reporter for the UFC broadcast team didn’t see any bad intentions behind Smith’s initial message, but perhaps it was a matter of a lack of knowledge. Smith has been criticized for his not so in-depth MMA coverage in the past, maybe it’s a replay.
“I don’t think he did it on purpose. I don’t think there was any (bad) intent. I don’t think he was trying to be rude by any means. I just think it didn’t really matter to him. … I don’t know how much he actually watched. I know he’s supposed to be an MMA insider and he does his best, but he has a lot on his plate, as well. I don’t know how much he actually sees. … I don’t want to make it about me and be like, ‘I don’t know how much he noticed me.’ I just don’t think he was genuinely paying attention.
“I also wonder if he was helped with the tweet.” Olivi added. “If maybe it was just, ‘OK, here are the people on the broadcast.’ Because I don’t know if he knows everyone on the broadcast, in general. So, it’s difficult to be overlooked and not take it personally. I’ve tried not to, and I’ve tried to use it as a moment – I don’t want to say a learning moment – but for me to just realize you go on whether people notice you or not. I think what I do is important, especially when I can tell the stories of these athletes.”
Despite what she feels towards Smith’s mistake, she’ll move forward once again, reporting on the scene at UFC 261, doing interviews at the packed VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena.