All Elite Wrestling (AEW) fired a Spanish commentary team member for mocking the accent of a Japanese wrestler.
What happened: Willie Urbina mocked the accent of Hikaru Shida, 32, who is currently the longest-reigning AEW Women’s World Champion.
The incident, which has now gone viral on social media, happened during a commercial break on last week’s episode of “AEW Dynamite.”
Co-announcer Alex Abrahantes asked Urbina to translate a promo for Shida, but Urbina instead gibbered in a mock Asian accent.
Co-announcer Thunder Rosa and Dasha Kuret told Urbina to stop, according to a translation for Fightful.
AEW has no breaks on FITE TV outside the U.S. for AEW Plus subscribers, so international viewers watching with Spanish commentary were able to hear the whole thing.
Shida lost to Britt Baker on Sunday’s “AEW Double or Nothing,” ending her 372-day reign, Wrestling Inc noted.
Fired: AEW fired Urbina last Saturday, just hours after the controversial broadcast, according to PW Insider.
Urbina, who worked for Impact Wrestling from 2006-2014, also did Spanish announcing for New Japan Pro-Wrestling.
AEW owner Tony Khan confirmed Urbina’s termination and apologized to Shida over the matter.
“I didn’t think there was any excuse. I was not happy. Afterwards, I heard what was said and having our commentators involved with what was said about her, who I also apologized to, I thought it was best for the company to make this decision,” Khan said, according to Fightful.
Shida responded to Urbina’s comments in English and Japanese tweets, expressing that she doesn’t care what “other people say about my race because I love it and [am] proud of it. I don’t even feel anger.”
Featured Image via Contralona (left) and AEW (right)
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