School of Self Awareness founder, Joshua Fabia has spoken out for the first time since his former student and client, Diego Sanchez ended their professional dealings — and has claimed that the former UFC lightweight title challenger, threw his UFC 239 fight with the #6 ranked welterweight contender, Michael Chiesa. 

Fabia, the hugely controversial and criticized head coach and manager of The Ultimate Fighter 1 middleweight tournament victor, Sanchez, saw his duties with the Albuquerque veteran end last week after the New Mexico native confirmed he had cut ties with Fabia.

Hitting the headlines over the last month, Fabia had been critical of the UFC broadcast team’s treatment of Sanchez during the UFC Fight Night Rio Rancho broadcast and confronted Jon Anik, the recently retired, Paul Felder, roving reporter, Megan Olivi, and the production team during Sanchez’s fighter meeting on ‘Fight Island’ last October in a leaked confrontation. 

In another leaked conversation, Fabia has a phone call with the UFC’s Chief Business Officer and lawyer, Hunter Campbell in which Campbell expresses his concern for Sanchez’s health after Fabia had made a formal request to obtain Sanchez’s medical history from his sixteen-year stay with the UFC. 

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Campbell had requested that Sanchez’s attorney and Fabia confirm whether or not their client was suffering from either short or long-term health effects, which they refused to do. Sanchez was subsequently released from the UFC and pulled from his proposed retirement fight against former teammate, Donald Cerrone. 

Criticized by many within the MMA community after the emergence of footage of him punching and kicking the head and body of an inverted Sanchez during a “body hardening” training session, Fabia was relieved of his duties as manager, attorney, and coach last week by the UFC Hall of Fame inductee.

Speaking publicly for the first time since Sanchez had ended their professional dealings, Fabia claimed that his former student had thrown his July 2019 showdown against the aforementioned, Chiesa. 

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Reports emerged recently detailing how Fabia had informed the Nevada State Athletic Commission that he had taught Sanchez a choke which could possibly kill Chiesa come fight night if Sanchez chose to apply it. 

Fabia posted a video of him attempting to record Sanchez’s pre-fight meeting with the NSAC, and believes the UFC and the commission forced Sanchez’s hand to throw his fight against Chiesa.

So, this moment happens where the Nevada State Athletic Commission comes in and leans on Diego (Sanchez), and he has to throw a f*cking fight,” Fabia said during a recent interview on Behind The Scenes with Summer Helene. “Now, I have them recorded… You go watch the fight (with Michael Chiesa), and it’s the only fight in Diego Sanchez’s history that he never threw a punch.

The way that they did it, is in the lean, which is in talking to somebody and dangling their license and explaining,” Fabia explained. “‘Are you really trying to hurt this man? You’re not trying to hurt him, are you Diego? You’re a sportsman, Diego. You’ve always been a good guy, Diego. You’re not gonna do anything with malicious intent, are you Diego?’

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Fabia then questions why Sanchez shot for a takedown against Chiesa and wrestler” — and elected against striking despite claims from Fabia that they had spent the majority of their camp polishing his striking.

Then on top of it, the last time Diego was a “sportsman”, he was a wrestler,” Fabia said. “So the first thing he comes out and does is goes and takes this guy’s leg. And he never throws a punch.

So, you tell me,” Fabia explained. “How come my fighter that’s been training for ten weeks to strike didn’t throw a strike.” (H/T Bloody Elbow)

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Aspiring mixed martial arts reporter based in Ireland. Follow along at @Ross_Markey on Twitter for all the latest news, fight announcements, opinion, and feature pieces.