"Get out of women's MMA, coward" - Sean Strickland slams transgender fighter Alana McLaughlin

Alana McLaughlin (left, image credits: @lady_feral); Sean Strickland (right).
Alana McLaughlin (left, image credits: @lady_feral); Sean Strickland (right).

Not one to hold back his thoughts, Sean Strickland has ridiculed the second openly transgender fighter in MMA, Alana McLaughlin.

The 30-year-old claimed that McLaughlin changing her name and calling herself "a woman" will not convince him to believe that the new Combate Global star is biologically a female.

McLaughlin became the subject of controversy following her win over Celine Provost on Friday night. She cruised past her French opponent via submission in the second round.

Strickland called McLaughlin a "coward" and also criticized the athletic commission for sanctioning the fight.

"Change your name, call yourself a woman... but you're still a fu****g man, get out of women's MMA, coward. This is why the athletic commission is useless," Strickland wrote on his Instagram story.
Screenshot of Strickland's Instagram story
Screenshot of Strickland's Instagram story

Strickland is set to fight Luke Rockhold at UFC 268. In his last outing, he breezed past Uriah Hall in convincing fashion. The three judges scored the contest 50-44, 50-45 and 49-46 in his favor.

Former UFC fighter Jake Shields also echoed Strickland's thoughts. The 42-year-old suggested that all promotions and athletic commissions should avoid letting a trans woman compete in women's MMA.

Alana McLaughlin responds to her critics

Alana McLaughlin found herself on the receiving end of criticism after her successful MMA debut. She claimed she received "nasty messages" and was also called a "cheater."

McLaughlin argued that fighting a woman doesn't give her an advantage. She used the fact that she was trailing Celine Provost on the judges' scorecard to aid her point.

"I'm getting a lot of variations of the same nasty messages calling me a cheater like I didn't just get beat on for a round and a half. Y'all need to show @cylinelagrande some respect and take your concern trolling elsewhere. She almost finished me more than once, and on scorecards she definitely won that first round. This is the only post I'll make about this. Transphobes are just making my block hand stronger," Alana McLaughlin wrote in an Instagram post.

Alana McLaughlin is only the second trans woman to participate in an MMA fight. Before her, it was Fallon Fox who raised eyebrows after she came out as transgender in 2013.

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Edited by Harvey Leonard