Following a huge night for the promotion Dana White spoke to Ariel Helwani about the major talking points emerging from the UFC 121 event.
See the full transcript of what he had to say and the video of the interview below.
On the outcome of Lesnar Vs Velasquez:
“I didn’t know who was going to win, but there was no way that thing was going the distance. You know, both guys can hit hard, both can do damage from that top position and both guys have the cardio to keep swinging. I didn’t think anybody was going to tire out or whatever, I thought those guys are going to go at it until somebody was finished.”
On the convincing manner in which Lesnar was beaten:
“The thing you’ve got to understand is, and the thing that’s been so amazing about Brock Lesnar is the guy had such little experience, you know, but every time he got out there and fought he looked better and better, and the question tonight was, would his size and strength and athleticism be able to beat this well rounded, gifted fighter.”
On whether Lesnar needs to evolve his strategy:
“I think it does work. To say it doesn’t work lately. Let me tell you what, he put it too Cain right when this fight started. He went after him man, and Cain’s one of these guys, he even said it here at the press conference tonight, ‘I got into brawl mode and we started brawling mode a little bit and I had to get into my zone where I had to relax and start picking my shots and not getting crazy and getting into a crazy street-fight with him.'”
How long will it be before Lesnar returns?
“It’ll be interesting to see. We’ll see what Brock Lesnar does here. I still think he’s going to do a little hunting and he’s going to take a little time. He’s got that scar on his face that gonna heal, but I think the competitive side of him will bring him back sooner.”
Is the WWE trying to put together a Lesnar Vs The Undertaker match?
First of all I don’t know if he is or isn’t. I’d find that hard to believe, but The Undertaker has been coming for a long time. He’s a fan of mixed martial arts and Brock is one of his guys. Those guys wrestled together. I went up and put the belt on Cain, talked to Brock then went right now so I didn’t hear any exchange, but if those guys were going back and forth it’s because they’re friends.”
On Dana and Lesnar’s relationship behind the scenes:
“Brock and I butt heads on things, we just do – it is what it is. And I don’t think it’s something where it’s like, ‘Oh we’re fighting and this thing is never going to work.’ We just tend to battle a little on things.”
Does Velasquez win open a lot of new doors in Mexico for the UFC?
“It’ll be interesting to see. I can’t say, ‘oh this has been a perfect gameplan and now…’ Listen, it is what it is. We put the best guys in the world in there and whoever wins, wins. And yes, I think because Cain is a real Mexican heavyweight champion, I think people care. I think we saw that at the press conference and we definitely saw it in the arena tonight.”
On Jake Shield’s performance:
“How could you not be impressed with his performance? He had a tough guy in Martin Kampmann. Martin Kampmann’s no joke. When you come in here, I don’t care where you’ve been, who you’ve fought or what you’ve done, the guys in the UFC fight the very best in the world three times a year. You know, these guys are no joke. He kept his composure.
On Martin Kampmann’s performance:
“I think tonight’s a night Martin Kampmann’s going to regret for a long time. I don’t think he let his hands go like he should have when he had the opportunities when he was on his feet. And it’s not like Jake Shields completely outwrestled and dominated him on the ground. I don’t think Martin Kampmann was ever in positions where he should have been terrified to get back into that position again. He should have let his hands go, and I think he’s going to realize that himself when he watches the fight.”
On the possibility of Tito Ortiz being cut after his loss:
“Well, I think going in to this fight what everyone heard me talk about is, this fight’s going to see if Tito’s still relevant in the 205lb division. Did he win tonight? He didn’t win tonight, but Tito look horrible. Tito didn’t look horrible either. Tito went in there and he fought and lost. He’s lost either four of his last five or five of his last six.”
Does he still want to be in the Tito Ortiz business?
“I wouldn’t put it that way. Back in the days when I was saying I didn’t want to be in the Tito Ortiz business was when I absolutely, positively despised Tito. Do I absolutely, positively despise Tito him? No I don’t. I don’t hate Tito any more. It just is what it is.”
On Diego Sanchez at 170lbs:
“I love Diego Sanchez at 170lbs. I think he’s strong there. He said it tonight – an in-shape Diego Sanchez is a tough, durable guy that will outwork you, out-tough you and outlast you.”