Ortega believes the Australian is doing his best to paint him in a bad light. On the latest episode of TUF, Ortega said:
"He [Alexander Volkanovski] wants to start talking sh*t and... Basically, he has been trying to turn me into the bad guy this whole show... He's getting annoying. He is trying to, like, turn the team against me or trying to, just, play little cards to just try to make me look bad."
The statement came after Alexander Volkanovski and Brian Ortega had another back-and-forth in the presence of UFC president Dana White and their respective teams.
What triggered the argument between Alexander Volkanovski and Brian Ortega?
Miles Hunsinger from Team Ortega and Gilbert Urbina from Team Volkanovski were scheduled to clash inside the cage. Unfortunately, Hunsinger developed a hyperextension in his knee during a light sparring session.
The doctor's diagnosis revealed that Hunsinger's knee suffered from a grade 2 MCL strain. Ultimately, Hunsinger received the go-ahead from the doctors to engage in competition. However, the risk of multiplying the damage to the knee was extremely potent, as made clear by the medical staff.
After consultation with Brian Ortega and other coaches, Hunsinger decided to pull out of the bout.
As both teams lined up inside the Apex gym, Alexander Volkanovski seemed irritated about having to wait for the fight to get underway. Breaking his silence and addressing Briana Ortega, Alexander Volkanovski said:
"What are youse so happy and chirpy about? We've been waiting this whole time and he [Brian Ortega] has been laughing like nothing is going on. We heard whispers that this might be what it is, but the way youse are carrying on, there's no way someone is injured. It just shows again. Shows you how much a piece of sh*t you are... Showin' true colors."
Speaking in his defence, Ortega countered Volkanovski's attack by questioning whether a good coach would let an injured fighter compete. Volkanovski, in turn, clarified that making an injured fighter enter the cage was not the point of his argument.
The frequent back-and-forth between Ortega and featherweight champion Alexander Volkanovski is only building up as the show continues.
TUF is ultimately laying the groundwork for an epic rivalry that will reach the canvas at UFC 266.