UFC president Dana White has a history of negatively publicising his fighters when they cook up troublesome problems for his promotion, and such was evidenced last weekend at UFC 213.
When news broke that Amanda Nunes had pulled out of her UFC 213 bantamweight tile fight against Valentina Shevchenko, just hours before it was scheduled to be broadcasted, yet again the MMA community was in despair.
However, before Nunes could even come to her own defence to justify her decision, White instantly made the situation worse than it needed to be, by stating “she was medically cleared to fight, but said she didn’t feel right.”
Just like that, insulting remarks of ‘scared, p*ssy and chump’ were being echoed around social media. Fans had instantly forgot about her five fight winning streak in which she tore through her divisions best, many in brutal fashion. And though she had never withdrew from a bout before in her life, Nunes, thanks to White, was made to look like a coward.
It’s far from the first time, as you can see below.
3. UFC 151 will be remembered as the event Jon Jones and Greg Jackson murdered.
Cast your minds back to before Jon ‘Bones’ Jones ever found himself in some legal trouble. Actually, scratch that, because prior to the event he ‘murdered’ he had already picked up a couple of DUI charges. But that’s not the point.
UFC 151 became the first ever event the promotion was forced to cancel. That happened when Jones refused to fight Chael Sonnen on just over a week’s notice, after his original opponent Dan Henderson withdrew from the bout with an injury.
Now whilst over the past few years we have seen many fighters willing to fight whoever on any given notice, Jones simply wasn’t willing to risk his legacy against an opponent that he hadn’t been training for. Reasonable? That’s certainly up for debate. But with White referring to Jones as ‘selfish’ and his trainer Jackson as a ‘f*cking weirdo’, the UFC president was enraged to say the least.
2. UFC 167: Dana’s Disdain of An All Time Great
When you’re putting together a list of the greatest ever MMA fighters, Georges St-Pierre will almost always fall into the top three of any sane person’s list. The face of the UFC for many years, St-Pierre’s run came to an ‘end’ in late 2013, when he won a split decision against Johny Hendricks to defend his welterweight title for the very last time.
The majority scored the fight a clear 48-47 unanimous decision victory for Hendricks, a consensus which White also agreed with. The president of the UFC was furious with both the decision, and St-Pierre’s remarks after the fight about ‘needing a vacation’ and ‘taking some time off.’
Showing no remorse for St-Pierre’s well-being, White let loose and went on to say that ‘Rush’ owed the company, fans and Hendricks the right of a rematch. Not allowing him to attend the post-fight press conference and taking his belt away was the epiphany that led to several members of the MMA media challenging White’s ludicrous remarks and decisions.
1. The Company Men.
Previously delving into Dana’s down-talk towards his fighters, the way ‘Stitch’ Duran and Mike Goldberg exited the UFC showed that no one was safe under White’s wrath. A long time cutman in combat sports, ‘Stitch’ was booted out of the UFC back in July of 2015, when he spoke out against the promotion’s newly instated Reebok deal.
Why? Well, we all know the soundbite. “Stitch Duran was never my friend.” Dana’s decision was one that was heavily criticised by MMA fans, and it evidenced the lack of voice those inside the UFC are allowed to have in this day and age.
Mike Goldberg almost racked up two decades worth of play-by-play commentary for the UFC before his departure in December of last year.
Loved by many for his passion, wittiness and comical bloopers, he provided an iconic soundtrack of roars and screams for the promotion. ‘Goldie’ left without any goodbye message from the UFC, something that him along with most MMA fans felt was ‘shocking and disappointing.’