Yesterday Dana White sat down with the media to talk about the big talking points leading into UFC 159 this weekend and you can check out our keynotes from the conversation and watch the full video for yourselves below.
– White doesn’t know how Jon Jones can be beaten – the blueprint doesn’t exist yet.
– He admits that it is possible Chael Sonnen could retire after this fight if he loses, pointing out that he has a lot of opportunities to work in front of the camera on FOX if he does so.
– Despite a lot of talk about the UFC potentially holding an event in New York this year due to a legal loophole, White says they won’t try to do anything “sneaky” and will only hold a fight if they get sanctioned. Unfortunately he’s not confident that will happen due to the continued interference by the Culinary Union.
– He confirms Matt Mitrione was fined a substantial amount for his comments on post-op transexual fighter Fallon Fox recently – enough that Mitrione phoned him multiple times pleading with him not to take that much money from him.
– Jones can equal Tito Ortiz’s run of title defenses if he wins on Saturday night, but White says that you can’t compare the two as Jones has fought a much higher level of competition to get there and did it in a much shorter space of time.
– White acknowledges it could be that GSP just doesn’t want to fight Anderson Silva, though he claims there was a point before the 170lb champ’s knee injury that he definitely did want it.
– The UFC president won’t pressure him into a superfight, but if he’s not going to do that then it’s definitely going to be Johny Hendricks for him next, and it’ll be soon – perhaps in August.
– GSP and Jon Jones have expressed a desire to have a chance to fight on a ‘UFC On FOX’ event (not against each other), but White indicates that due to how much money they generate on PPV that’s unlikely to happen.
– White took the recent Boston tragedy personally – he used to go to watch the marathon himself when he lived there. He’ll visit Boston after the fights on Saturday night where he’ll meet with the family who lost their son in the bombing and will also visit with the mayor. He’s going to be giving money and he says both FOX and the UFC will too.
– FOX have big plans for the launch week of FOX Sports 1 which will feature a big UFC live event. He says they’ll be doing a lot of “cool stuff” in New York that week.
He’s staying quiet on who’ll compete on the ‘UFC On FS1’ event, but boldly claims it’s going to be the best television card they’ve ever done.
– White won’t make Matt Mitrione apologize. He says he never does force anyone to do so as then it’s not genuine. He says it’s up to the fighter to make that decision.
– Announcer Bruce Buffer recently did an interview with Fighters Only magazine talking about his “Playboy” lifestyle. White’s practically speechless about it, admitting he first thought it was an April Fools joke.
– Jim Miller is there or thereabouts in the title mix at 155lbs according to White, while former Strikeforce fighter Pat Healy could catapult himself into the picture with a win.
– White thinks that Bisping vs Belcher should have got more attention, saying it’s “a crazy fight.”
– If Sonnen beats Jones, he thinks that would be a bigger upset than when Matt Serra shocked the world by defeating GSP.
– White likes the idea of Jones current plan to entertain superfights and heavyweight bouts next year, saying that could be what will keep him motivated.
– UK boxer Tyson Fury has been calling out MMA recently, and White says he’s welcome to come over to the UFC and “get smashed” any time he wants too. If he wants to come over and get beaten up on TV in front of the whole world he’s happy to accomodate him.
– Dominick Cruz will keep his bantamweight belt for now – if he gets another injury the title will be taken from him.
– White would prefer to see Daniel Cormier at 205lbs. He doesn’t think he has as good punching power at heavyweight. If he goes to light-heavyweight he could potentially get an immediate title shot.