UFC president Dana White and color commentator Joe Rogan took to the stage today in Germany for the UFC 122 Fightclub Q&A, answering questions from the fans on a variety of topics.
Check out the keynotes of what they had to say below.
– Dana White says Frank Mir talked a lot of smack before his fight with Mirko Cro Cop but then didn’t deliver. “I was very unhappy with that fight.”
– White is still convinced Anderson Silva is the p4p best in the sport, saying fights like his last gasp win over Chael Sonnen only help to build his legend. He also points to the fact that Silva is now 36 years old yet is still dominant.
Joe Rogan then chimes in to add that the problem with Silva’s lackluster fights is that it’s down to the standard of opposition he’s facing. “He’s got to be tested,” he says. White adds that they try to give fighters they think will challenge him but, “he’s so good.”
– Continuing the conversation on Silva, Dana admits he’d love to see him at 205lbs, pointing out that there’s challenges for him throughout that division. “I’d have loved to have seen him there three years ago,” White adds.
Rogan says he’d love to see him fight Shogun. White mentions ‘Bones’ Jones. “I wanna see ‘Bones’ Jones Vs Velasquez,” Rogan replies. “He’s a growing boy that ‘Bones’ Jones.”
– “I believe we’ll open up that 125lb division a lot sooner than we think we will,” Dana says.
– Meanwhile White confirms that the addition of the WEC’s 135lb and 145lb divisions means there’s more title fights to go round, and so it’s more likely that European events will now have a chance to host championship fights.
– White confirms that the UFC will be returning to Australia in February.
– Jake Shields will be the next fighter to face Georges St.Pierre for the welterweight title. White says there’s no other reason for overlooking Jon Fitch other than the fact that he’s already had a shot at the title in the past.
– White says he hasn’t talked to Brock Lesnar yet but the last he heard he wanted to fight Frank Mir again. According to White, Lesnar did not ask to fight Roy Nelson.
– When asked by a fan about the chances of Alistair Overeem coming to the UFC, White admits that Joe Rogan had just asked him the same thing. White says he likes the Dutch fighter and has a good relationship with him, but there’s nothing to report on that front at this moment in time.
– Dana White says Scotland is “definitely” a destination the UFC is coming to, and says it could play host to an event in 2011.
– Dana and Joe laugh when asked why Aaron Wilkinson is subtitled on TUF. “No offense, but you guys are hard to understand sometimes!” White says.
“In all fairness we subtitled James Toney as well,” Rogan quips.
– Dana says that Australia is one of the big markets for the UFC at the moment along with the U.S, Canada and the UK and a fan expo could well happen in the region. He belives Australia could overtake the UK in terms of popularity if it continues to grow at it’s current rate.
– Rogan describes Jake Ellenberger as “one of the dark horses of the [welterweight] division,” amd says Fitch Vs Ellenberger is a great fight.
– Tito Ortiz Vs Lil Nog is going to happen in March, 2011.
– WEC matchmaker Sean Shelby’s job is safe despite the UFC – WEC merger.
– Joe Rogan says he’s too old to compete in the octagon. He also makes a good point that, “Fighting should be a singular pursuit. I don’t think you should be a fighter / stand-up comedian / whatever the hell else you’re doing. You gotta be a fighter only, it’s got to be the singular focus of your life, cos if it’s not you’re going to get your brains scrambled.”
– Matchmaker Joe Silva answers a question about potential British champion’s. He mentions John Hathaway despite his recent loss, saying that he’s still young and has good fundamentals to build from.
– Rogan states that there’s no ‘talking points’ that he is given going into a UFC fight, everything he or Dana White or anybody else says to hype up a fight is purely their own opinions.
– White says he likes Stefan Struve and describes him as, “The King Of The Comebacks.”
– The chances of Paul Daley returning to the UFC crop up frequently at these Q&A’s but once again Dana shut down the idea of having him back. Rogan says he’s a fan of him though and hopes that one day Dana will change his mind.
– Dana says, “it would be fun,” to get Bellator champ Eddie Alvarez in the UFC.
– France is another destination the UFC, “are really working hard to get done,” says Dana.
– Joe Silva says the level of competition in countries like Thailand and China is still low due to focus on traditional martial arts rather than MMA, but that as the sport continues to grow more fighters will emerge from those regions as they have done in other countries like the UK.
See below for some brief video highlights from the Q&A.