Dana White held his traditional media scrum following the UFC 166 media day yesterday and you can check out full keynotes of what he had to say below, plus scroll down to watch the full video for yourselves.
– White won’t budge on his stance that Rousimar Palhares will never fight in the UFC. He essentially says that the leg locks that Palhares uses can produce career-threatening injuries, so he’s just not willing to take the risk.
– The fact that a massive brand like Nike are now starting to sponsor UFC fighters is another milestone for the sport.
– He didn’t know anything about Junior Dos Santos having a cut above his eye a few weeks ago. He doesn’t think it’s that big of a deal, but he says it all depends on how good a job the doctor did with it.
– Jon Jones Vs Glover Teixeira fight will be in either March or April.
– It’s very possible that if Cain Velasquez wins tomorrow night then he could fight in Mexico next.
– Rousey is apparently in a good place right now mentally and physically while shooting ‘The Expandables 3’. White thinks it was a good thing for her to go and do it and she’s assured him she’s got everything under control.
– White doesn’t care about what Bellator are doing, saying it doesn’t matter to him. He finds it strange that they are willing to let their current champion Ben Askren if the UFC offers him a deal. He thinks they are just playing games.
– Dana is still determined to test his fighters thoroughly if they are using TRT to make sure they are staying within legal limits.
– White got tired of all the pranks on the latest season of TUF, so he started to clamp down on them. He says there’s a lot of “sh*t” between Ronda and Miesha that hasn’t been shown. He also claims that Rousey wasn’t interested in playing pranks, she just wants to fight.
– It doesn’t sounds as if Conor McGregor is going to get in trouble for making a lewd comment about Ronda and Miesha on Twitter. he likes the fact that McGregor had already apologized by the time he found out about it, and after speaking to the two ladies it seems that they weren’t bothered by it.
– He claims there’s a knockout on the current season of TUF that’s even more brutal than Uriah Hall’s one from last season.
– Dana loves the idea of a Michael Bisping vs Nick Diaz bout, but so far he’s not hearing any indication that Diaz wants to fight again.
– Dana is sticking to his guns that there’ll be 13 fights in Brazil next year even though others in the organization are claiming that’s not going to be the case.
– The next TUF: Brazil coaches will be announced within the next month.
– Renan Barao and his camp would be willing to delay getting the bantamweight belt even longer if it meant he’d eventually be able to fight Dominick Cruz since he wants to earn the title, not just be given it.
– Everything White is hearing suggests that Cruz is on the mend though and is going to be ready to fight early next year.
– He’ll be meeting with Stefan Struve when they visit the UK in a couple of weeks time. Struve will only get back into the Octagon if he gets medical approval to do so after his heart issues.
– White doesn’t like amateur MMA – he feels those fighters should be paid.
– When Roy Nelson appeared on TUF Season 10 it transpired that he actually was under contract with another promotion, so Dana had to end up buying them out so he could continue to appear on the show. White cites this as an example of why Nelson isn’t the smartest when it comes to the fight business.
– Machida’s fight against Munoz is a big deal for the Brazilian. White thinks that at 205lbs he was “in nomansland”, but this is a chance to get himself back to the top.
– White hated the latest Vladimir Klitschko fight and thinks it’s terrible that he was paid $17 million for such a bad fight. He thinks he should have been disqualified for his spoiler tactics.
He thinks boxing’s heavyweight division is “lost” and he doesn’t understand why Junior Dos Santos wants to fight someone like Klitschko who clearly doesn’t want to fight and just holds on for 12 rounds. It’s a fight he wouldn’t want to see.
– Dana won’t say that it could never happen that a fighter could be a champion in both MMA and boxing, but he thinks it’s unlikely.
– He has no problem with Jon Jones decision to fight Glover Teixeira next. In fact he actually like it and thinks it’s “badass” given that Jones has guaranteed that he’ll take a rematch with Gustafsson after that.
– Fedor says he didn’t sign with the UFC because he had the feeling that White hated him. On the contrary, White says he was desperate to do Fedor Vs Brock Lesnar, and even if he didn’t like him it wouldn’t have made a difference and he’d have still been treated well. He points to the fact that at one stage Tito Ortiz was the most hated man in the company, yet he still ended up retiring in the UFC and was paid handsomely even after his long losing streak.
Apparently Lorenzo Fertitta also tried to sign Fedor a further two times, but was also unsuccessful.
White claims that the trip to an island to meet with Fedor’s representatives and try to sign him was the craziest he’s ever been on, but he’s not going to talk about all the details. “I’ll tell that story one day,” he says.
He does say that they made Fedor a ridiculous offer that actually made no sense for the UFC because they were so desparate to sign him. He jokes that on the plane on the way home they were actually relieved that The Russian’s management team turned it down because it saved them a lot of money!
– He’s got no doubt that Velasquez and JDS are the two best heavyweights in the world and he’s really excited for the fight, particularly as he’s really not sure who’s going to win.
– The Houston event is completely sold out with a $2.5 million gate.
– His estimation of Jon Jones went way up after the Gustafsson fight for the way he battled back. White says Jones was absolutely spent after the fight, but managed to do what he needed to in order to win.