Read what Dana white had to say in his UFC 123 post-event interview with MMAFighting’s Ariel Helwani and scroll down to watch the full video.
On the Rampage Vs Machida decision: “I had Rampage winning the fight too. I think Rampage went in there with a perfect gameplan to fight Machida and implemented it perfectly, and I had him winning the first two rounds and losing third.”
On Rampage’s reaction to the decision: “It’s crazy man. I mean you go in, you put on the perfect fight against Machida. If you think about Machida’s style, from when they first started the fight, if Rampage stays on the outside he’s going to get leg kicked to death like he did in the Forrest Griffin fight where he’s not going to be able to walk at the end.
“He took a few of those leg kicks for the first two minutes and then every time Machida throws that leg kick Rampage starts blasting him and going in and punching him, throwing him off his rhythm. Then when Machida clinches with him against the fence Rampage continues to do damage – foot stomps, hitting the knees, hitting the body, as soon as he breaks the clinch and throws punches.
“He fought the perfect gameplan, did exactly what he needed to do and then at the end of the fight starts acting like he loses the fight…it’s crazy, but that’s my boy.”
On Rampage’s performance: “I thought he looked a million times better than his past fight. The question I had, for me, I thought he looked slow in his last couple of fights. He did not look slow tonight.”
On Machida’s performance: “The thing about Machida too, Machida shows these signs of brilliance where he just, like he threw that flying knee that hit Rampage hard right in the stomach, and you know Rampage is a human being no matter how tough he is, you know he’s hurt, and instead of starting to kick he body again and go after him because you know you hurt him he starts moving around and running away. You don’t win fights like that.
“I know that some people are saying Machida won the fight, I need to watch it again. He lands like maybe five or six punches in the third round – that doesn’t win you a fight.”
On whether he likes Machida’s style: “Yeah, no I appreciate Machida’s style. You know, you get these people that’ll start booing – There’s so much on the line. Guys are going to fight smart fights. There’s a different between a smart fight and a boring fight.”
On Rampage’s next opponent: “I don’t know about Rampage, we’ll see what’s next.”
On BJ Penn’s performance at welterweight: “He did look good tonight. I thought he looked like the old BJ, and I actually like BJ at 170lbs. He came in talking to himself all crazy, swearing at himself, fired up. He looked like the BJ from the old days, so you know, I think I like him at 170lbs.”
On Penn’s next fight: “We’ll do him and Fitch in Sydney [as the main event].” White confirms that means Fitch Vs Ellenberger is no longer happening.
Winner of Penn vs Fitch gets a title shot? – “Yeah, they are definitely in the mix.”
On Falcao’s debut: “I mean the third round was horrendous. This is the ultimate fighting championship not the ultimate staring competition, but before that, I mean the kid looks like a great fighter.
On what he said to Falcao post-fight: “Well, they came up and apologized to me and I said what I just said to you – ‘No one wants to see two guys starting at each other. We’ll cut you some slack, this is your first fight in the UFC. You know, everybody gets their jitters, everyone gets nervous, and there were parts of the fight where he looked great.”
“I think the kid showed really good signs of a very good, well rounded fighter. I think I expect big things from him in the future.”
On Phil Davis performance: “Yeah, I thought the submission was great. The thing is about him, good kid and everything else, I think he needs to get a little bit more well rounded. He’s in a very tough division. He needs to work on his stand-up, and you can’t just depend on wrestling in that 205lb division.”
On Karo Parisyan’s future: “I said, Karo, this is it, I’m going to give you one more shot, and I think he showed tonight he can’t perform here any more.”
On his comments after UFC 112 that he would repay the fans: “I was just so fired up that night and so pissed off, but you know what, I always give back to the fans, whether it’s a fight night or a pay-per-view. All I do – first of all, I’m working every day to grow it, get it bigger, and give the fans more and more. It’s all about the fans, and I’m all about the fans. I mean I don’t know what these guys want me to do, send them f*ckin’ new cars with bows on them? I don’t know, all I can do is keep making it bigger and keep putting on free fights and giving them as many free fights as I can give them.”
Watch Dana’s full post-fight interview below.