As Amanda Nunes defends her belt against the once-invincible Ronda Rousey at the T-Mobile Arena at UFC 207 on Friday night, an era comes to an end for mixed martial arts broadcasting with the exit of Mike Goldberg.
Play-by-play announcer Goldberg, who calls the UFC fights with color commentator Joe Rogan, will host the chaos in the octagon for the last time after broadcasting MMA for almost two decades. The 52-year-old native of Cincinnati started his UFC career calling UFC 15.5: Ultimate Japan in December of 1997. Known for making somewhat stupid statements—“his precision is not really precise”—Goldberg’s departure will be welcomed by many but missed by those who reveled in his malapropisms.
President of the Ultimate Fighting Championship Dana White, according to one social media critic, plans on picking controversial sports broadcasting icon Jim Rome to form an MMA dream team telecast with Rogan.
Earlier in his career Goldberg spent some time calling NHL games for the Detroit Red Wings and the Minnesota Wild. He announced one NFL game between the Lions and the Vikings, which was summarily panned ending his NFL career after just one game, when he made a plethora of mistakes and referred to one Twitter critic as a “douche.” In 2013 reports circulated that “Goldie” entered a rehabilitation facility to recover from pill addiction, although he vigorously denied it.
The veteran broadcaster said at the time, “It was disappointing, it was hurtful, and yet the outpour of support by the majority of the people on social media, on Twitter was very heartfelt and it was appreciated… People like to see people fail, people like gossip, people like to think the worst, people unfortunately that’s the society we live in. ”