Following this past weekend’s UFC 145 fight card in Atlanta, UFC president Dana White sat down to talk to the media about some of the big talking points currently making headlines in MMA.
Read the keynotes below and scroll down to watch the full Q&A for yourselves.
– White is “feeling not too optimistic” about Alistair Overeem’s NSAC hearing on Tuesday.
– He makes it clear that the anger he has over the situation is directed purely at Overeem, not NSAC, saying that he spoke to the fighter before all this happened and was assured that he’s have no problems passing drugs tests and that they could do so whenever they wanted.
Nevertheless he still feels he can do business with Overeem in the future regardless of the outcome of the hearing. “If I can do business with Tito [Ortiz] I can do business with Alistair!” he jokes.
There’s no chance the UFC would attempt to have Overeem fight in another state if Nevada does deny his fighter license though. He’ll effectively have to sit on the sidelines for a year if that happens.
– Frank Mir or Fabrico Werdum were the two choices they had in mind to replace Overeem against Junior Dos Santos. Mir made a lot of sense and was already on the card so that’s why they opted for him, but in general Mir was Dana’s No.1 pick.
– Dana denies that he has any problem with Anderson Silva regarding the possibility that his bout with Chael Sonnen could be moved out of Brazil and says that’s a flat out lie made up by someone in the media.
– If the Silva Vs Sonnen fight does get moved from UFC 147 White says that the rest of the card will remain intact and will still take place in Brazil. most likely with TUF: Brazil coaches Vitor Belfort and Wanderlei Silva in the main event slot.
He also says that whatever happens Silva Vs Sonnen is a huge fight for the company and needs to be done “the right way”.
– He confirms that Bellator fighters Eddie Alvarez and Hector Lombard are on the UFC’s radar.
– Dana won’t rule out the possibility of welterweight team-mates GSP and Rory MacDonald fighting in the future despite their insistance that they wouldn’t do it. He says if MacDonald could see St.Pierre’s bank account he’d want to “beat the Sh!t out of him!”
– He doesn’t hate Fedor Emelianenko, but he absolutely loathes his management M-1 Global and is still fuming that they turned down a huge money deal to have Fedor fight Brock Lesnar a few years ago. He says “it’s over” for Fedor now.
– White is happy to see Brock Lesnar being able to rejoin the WWE and be a star there. He feels Lesnar deserves respect for coming to the UFC and doing as well as he did against a series of tough opponents.
– Jon Jones is becoming a crossover star in White’s opinion, and he says part of his charm is that he’s still young and has a somewhat naive side to him.
– The UFC are working on another ‘Fight For The Troops’ event, though there’s no indication of when it will actually happen yet.
– There’s not going to be a card in Hawaii any time soon, but they are trying hard to get something going in Mexico. It’s easier said than done though, whereas by contrast White says China is a destination that’s coming along faster than expected and should be getting an event this year along with an edition of TUF.
– BJ Penn told Dana that he does want to fight again.
– In White’s opinion Jon Jones should stay at 205lbs as long as possible where he enjoys a size advantage over most fighters. He thinks eventually his physique will fill out as he gets older and that will be the time to move up.
– TUF: UK Vs Australia could be just the first of a number of seasons of the show which pit rival countries against each other.