UFC’s Laura Sanko snaps back at former MMA champion who says her commentary is ‘Ruining the fights’

UFC's Laura Sanko snaps back at former MMA champion who says her commentary is 'ruining the fights'

While the UFC’s return to The APEX delivered some epic finishes, Laura Sanko may have scored the biggest knockout of the night.

Sanko returned to the commentary table on Saturday night for a loaded UFC Vegas 89 card featuring the return of former two-time strawweight world champion ‘Thug’ Rose Namajunas. As usual, Sanko was a welcome addition to the broadcast, sharing her expertise through the 13-fight card. However, not everyone was appreciative of her efforts.

Crawling out of whatever hole he lives in these days, former WEC lightweight champion Jamie Varner went on the attack, calling out Sanko and her “annoying” commentary in a pair of scathing posts online.

Varner expressed his disdain for Laura Sanko’s commentary on X, writing: “Leave the commentary to the people that have actually fought. A female UFC fighter should have that job, she is just annoying and it’s obvious she is trying so hard and doesn’t know what she is talking about.” Varner added in a follow-up post that Sanko is “a try-hard that speaks about things she knows nothing about. Talking about blast doubles and how tiring it could be in the first round of the fight, like what do you know about any of those things? Stay in your lane.”

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Jamie Varner on Laura Sanko
Jamie Varner on Laura Sanko

Laura Sanko Reminds Jamie Varner of the time they fought on the same card

Clearly, Varner forgot that Laura Sanko is in fact a former fighter, having amassed a 5-1 overall record while competing for promotions such as Titan FC and Invicta. Responding to Varner’s criticism, Sanko even recalled details of when the two former fighters appeared on the same card together.

“It’s ok that you don’t like my commentary, but respectfully, I’ve been a part of this game and training since 2006,” Sanko wrote. I’m a brown belt in Jiu Jitsu and while I can’t compare my career to yours I have in fact fought. And if UFC had a 105 division I would have fought a lot longer.

“You and I actually fought on the same card in 2011 for Titan FC. We warmed up next to each other in the basement of the Memorial Hall building in KCK. My best friend braided your hair because you couldn’t find anyone to do it. I remember thinking how cool it was at the time to be on a card with you. I had followed your career in the WEC and was a little star-struck to be honest.”

Laura Sanko replies to Jamie Varner

For those curious, the event in question was Titan FC 20 in September 2011. Sanko won her bout against Kyla Potter in less than a minute via armbar while Varner lost his fight with current BKFC standout Dakota Cochrane.

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Sanko put her mixed martial arts career to bed in 2013, but she was far from done in the sport. After earning her spot as a roving reporter for the UFC, she was given a shot at the commentary booth in 2021, joining the broadcast team for Dana White’s Contender Series. Two years later, Sanko made history at UFC 293 in Australia by becoming the first woman in the promotion’s Zuffa era to serve as a color commentator.

Laura Sanko

Sanko’s energetic and insightful commentary has been a welcomed addition to every broadcast she participates in and has quickly become a favorite among fight fans.