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UFC fighter Jamahal Hill's team bus was attacked by pro-Palestine protesters in downtown New York City after a UFC event, with crowd members smashing the windows and allegedly slashing the tires.
Hill, who was the light heavyweight champion before he vacated the title due to a ruptured Achilles tendon, was riding with his team in Manhattan when they were enveloped by a group of protesters.
After leaving the UFC 295 pay-per-view event, Hill and his management team were trapped by protesters at the intersection of 41st Street and Seventh Avenue. According to the New York Post, the protesters were demanding a ceasefire between Israel and Palestine.
"Trying to leave downtown. Our bus is being attacked right now by something, some protest or something that’s going on. They’re throwing, they’re breaking our windows, and all this and that," Hill said in a video from inside the van.
"If any of my people down here downtown and you really got me … come get these people up off our bus," the fighter added.
A video shot from the crowd showed a group of people approach Hill's team vehicle, forcibly open the driver-side door, and scream expletives at the driver.
"What's wrong with you, motherf***er?!" one man in the crowd screamed as others banged on the side of the bus.
"[Get] the f**k out of here, bitch!" another man yelled. The van was also vandalized with a sticker that read "From the U.S. to Palestine abolish the settler state."
Man in van tries to drive through march on 47th street and 7th Ave pic.twitter.com/SXd9xPuUif
— 🐬 (@thizzl_) November 11, 2023
Hill's manager, Brian Butler, said that once protesters noticed there was UFC security in the vehicle, they started hurling random insults about the UFC.
"I think they were curious because it was a big Sprinter van, so they started coming up and putting their signs and stuff up on the window. Then they got a look inside and they could see it was UFC security in there, and they were like, ‘Oh, UFC people.’ Then they started saying stuff like, you know, just mob mentality stuff," he told USA Today's MMA Junkie.
"Nothing other than that sheer energy that was going on. It was like, ‘UFC people are bitches,’ UFC people are this and that."
These comments apparently didn't go over well with the 205-pound fighter, who started "seeing red."
"Jamahal started seeing red, so it was an issue trying to get him calmed down," Butler claimed, before somewhat placating the violent protesters.
"It went from zero to having the whole vehicle surrounded and banging on it. The windows started breaking, and then Jamahal said he saw someone pull out a knife and they slashed all our tires. It could have been a very bad situation, but it ended well."
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