Dana White. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
Just a reminder that UFC President Dana White will be featured as a guest on tonight’s edition of “Late Night with Jimmy Fallon”. The show airs on NBC at 12:35 PM ET. Additional guests on the program include Matt Lauer, Mary McCormack and a music performance by Iron & Wine.
From last night’s episode of E:60 on ESPN, here’s the segment done on UFC President Dana White. “The Ultimate Fighter” (the name of the segment, not the “TUF” show) discusses whether or not White’s controversial personality is the right one to lead the UFC into the future. It’s a good question…
Anderson Silva. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
It seems as if Roy Jones Jr and Anderson Silva’s constant quest to fight each other will never end, at least not at this rate. The newest development in the saga comes courtesy of Jones, who according to Silva’s manager, Ed Soares, would be willing to fight “The Spider” instead of the Octagon.
The idea still isn’t sitting well with UFC President Dana White:
“You won’t see a Silva versus Jones fight while Silva is under contract with me,” White said Tuesday. “I don’t want to say anything bad about Roy Jones, I like Roy Jones and was a fan of his, but he mattered like fifteen years ago. He’s not anywhere near the best boxer in the world. He must’ve spent all his money.”
“I could do it, make it huge, make money, but I could have done a fight like this when we were bleeding money [in the early 2000s],” White said. “The fight would make some money, but it hurts MMA in the long term. We don’t do that because we love the sport. That’s a Pride or K-1 matchup. It’s not what we do.”
This isn’t just a matter of White saying no out of the blue. According to the article, the management teams of both Jones and Silva agreed on terms of an MMA match before bringing the idea to White, who promptly shot it down.
While it seems that White would be crazy to do, one has to dig deeper into his potential reasoning. If Dana were to put on a Jones-Silva bout, RJJ would be asking for money, and lots of it. Possibly more than any mixed martial artist has ever been paid. The UFC is already reluctant to hand out the big bucks as it is, and a big payout to Jones could end up forcing other fighters to start speaking up for their fair share.
On top of that, everyone knows that even though the fight will be taking place under MMA rules, Silva would likely opt to stand and trade with Jones, boxing style. Silva has a much better chance with 4 oz. gloves on his hands rather than 16 oz. mitts, but remember that Jones will be wearing the smaller gloves as well. Did Dana make the right decision here? At least in terms of his investment, it’s very possible.
Ricardo Arona. Photo property of PRIDE FC Worldwide.
Two years after his shocking upset loss to Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou at PRIDE Fighting Championship’s final show, former light heavyweight standout Ricardo Arona has yet to fight again. Offers from DREAM, Affliction, and others have come and gone, but Arona has yet to be contacted by the one promotion he truly wants to fight in - the UFC.
UFC President Dana White recently responded to Tatame.com regarding questions raised by Arona as to why he was never offered a contract with the organization following Zuffa’s purchase of PRIDE two years ago. (It’s tough to fully understand what White is trying to say because of the English to Portugese translation, but he basically stated there is little interest in Arona) Still, despite White’s comments, Arona is still actively pursuing a chance with MMA’s top brand:
After hearing the UFC president, Arona said that didn’t want to be offensive to the event. “Certainly Dana White thought I was criticizing him, that I was talking bad about his event, but it wasn’t. I didn’t want to belittle the athletes of the UFC, that wasn’t my intention”, says Arona, asking for a chance to show his value in the octagon. “I never had a direct position from him, I wasn’t contacted by the Ultimate. Dana White could give me an opportunity to know if I’m good or not”, finalized Arona.
It’s hard to say when Arona is finally going to return to action. For now, he’s slated to compete at ADCC ‘09 later this year. He said that he was ready to go last April, but remains on the sidelines a year later. Being able to test himself in the UFC would be the ideal situation for Arona, but the truth is that he hasn’t fault in over two years and even then, had lost three out of his last four fights. He would be better off shaking off the rust in DREAM, who would likely be content to feed Arona a couple of lesser opponents than the UFC would.
Rich Franklin. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
The respective careers of Rich Franklin and Wanderlei Silva are at a crossroads, and their scheduled meeting at UFC 99 in June couldn’t come at a better time for the fighters themselves and fans alike. But with the bout taking place at a catch-weight of 195 lbs, almost no one knows where either Franklin or Silva go from here, except for Dana White:
“I met Rich in the middle,” UFC president Dana White said of the decision for the catchweight. “Rich didn’t want to cut weight. He didn’t want to go back to 85, and Wanderlei hasn’t been to 85 yet.
“I think it’s a fun fight and it will be a fun fight to watch,” said White.
Regardless of the outcome, Franklin will continue to compete at light heavyweight while Silva is expected to debut as a middleweight in his next scheduled bout following the Franklin fight.
The decision to go their separate ways is the best idea for both fighters. At middleweight, Franklin would just be knocking off potential title contenders, but at light heavyweight, he can challenge for a belt in a division he’s yet to conquer. No longer a real threat at light heavyweight, Silva will also find new territory at 185 lbs. It’s a win-win situation for all parties involved.
Dana White. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
After Strikeforce purchased select assets from ProElite earlier this month and in turn, landed some of the sport’s marquee names, many were expecting UFC President Dana White to go off on one of his usual tirades about his competition.
To date, White had never said a bad thing about Strikeforce, but had been extremely critical concerning the efforts of the International Fight League, Affliction, EliteXC, and the PRIDE Fighting Championships in the past. Those waiting for White’s negative comments towards Strikeforce now that they are his promotion’s biggest rival will have to continue waiting:
UFC President Dana White has often scoffed at the attention paid to Slice, but he draws a distinction between Strikeforce’s interest and EliteXC’s handling of the inexperienced heavyweight.
Unlike promoter Affliction, which has put on two pay-per-view events focusing on the heavyweight class, Strikeforce has no quarrel with UFC, the dominant force in MMA.
“I’m sure they’re going to put on some good shows, and hopefully, they can make that business model work for them,” White says. “I’ve got nothing negative to say about them whatsoever.”
The IFL and Affliction, at least to date, didn’t really do anything to hurt the sport at all like EliteXC did, yet White was quick to point out that the way their models were setup was stupid. So far he’s been right. So why isn’t he going after Scott Coker?
I think it’s because White realizes that Coker is just as intelligent as he is about the sport and is slowly building up his brand instead of jumping right into the fray like everyone else did. It’s a combination that won’t be hurtful to the UFC, but could end up in them having their first stable competitor in North America for the first time in a long time.
Georges St. Pierre. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
All kinds of rumors have been flying regarding who will be part of the Ultimate Fighting Championship’s historic 100th pay-per-view event later this year. Now it seems that one of them has been confirmed courtesy of UFC President Dana White, who stated on a recent Montreal radio show that Georges St. Pierre’s upcoming welterweight title defense against Thiago Alves would likely take place at the event:
UFC president Dana White was the guest on a recent Montreal-based radio show on CKAC Sports 730AM to discuss his promotion’s own controversial issues regarding the Quebec Athletic Commission’s new interpretation of its own rules putting UFC 97 in jeopardy. While on the show, the juggernaught kingpin revealed his part of his plan for his promotion as it hits the century mark in numbered events.
“I’m pretty confident that UFC 100 will have Georges St. Pierre on the card,” he told the host of the program on CKAC. “UFC 100 will more than likely have Georges St. Pierre defending his welterweight title.”
He also confirmed that the event would take place in July in the sweltering heat of Las Vegas, the promotion’s home base, and not in the moderate temperatures of Denver, where the UFC was born.
I couldn’t be more excited that this fight is taking place on the UFC’s grandest stage to date. Not only is this going to be a tough test for St. Pierre, but could make for one of the most exciting fights in recent memory. At first glance, one would think that St. Pierre’s wrestling could lead to him grinding out another decision, but Alves’ takedown defense has been fantastic in his last few bouts. On top of that, we all know how GSP likes to go after another fighter’s strengths. A war on the feet anyone?
B.J. Penn. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
If you thought that the war between Georges St. Pierre and B.J. Penn was over, think again. Penn’s camp has informed Sherdog.com that they intend to file a formal complaint with the Nevada State Athletic Commission after officials spotted one of St. Pierre’s cornermen allegedly rubbed Vaseline on his back in between the first and second and then the second and third rounds.
“We are not trying to make excuses, but the NSAC needs to protect the fighters,” Penn told Sherdog.com via text message. “They never notified us or completely wiped his back with water and towels.”
Various reports are circulating that following the conclusion of the first round, Phil Nurse, who has been working St. Pierre’s corner for a number of years, was caught by someone sitting at ringside rubbing Vaseline on St. Pierre’s back and shoulders. It has yet to be confirmed that this person was former UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck Liddell, but “The Iceman” was the first to inform UFC President Dana White of the incident after the conclusion of the fight, which St. Pierre won via fourth-round doctor’s stoppage.
Here’s the fifth and final part of UFC President Dana White’s video blog for UFC 94. Here you can see White’s initial reaction when Chuck Liddell informs him that the Nevada State Athletic Commission caught Georges St. Pierre’s corner apparently rubbing vasoline on his back in between rounds. More on that to come.
Here’s the fourth part of UFC President Dana White’s video blog for this Saturday’s UFC 94 event, which takes place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. In this edition, behind-the-scenes footage of “The Ultimate Fighter: Team USA vs. Team UK” are shown, White and Lorenzo Fertitta are interviewed for ESPN’s E:60, and some random dude tries to run a seven-minute mile.