Dana White Fires Back at Jake Paul: “You Can’t Sell Pay-Per-Views”

Dana White, UFC President
Dana White, UFC Vegas 45 post-fight Credit: Alex Behunin/Cageside Press

One of 2021’s most unnecessary celebrity feuds has continued into the new year. On Saturday, Jake Paul posted a list of demands, including higher starting pay for fighters and 50% revenue sharing between the UFC and athletes, for him to quit boxing and fight Jorge Masvidal inside the octagon.

Of course, Paul vastly outweighs Masvidal, and the fight would likely never happen as a result. But his take on fighter pay, which isn’t exactly wrong, was certainly noticed. Especially by UFC President Dana White, who issued his own response.

White fired back in a video statement Saturday, suggesting Paul start his own promotion. He also spent the bulk of his response calling back to Paul’s claim that White uses cocaine — reiterating a past challenge to drug test for cocaine for 10 years, if Jake Paul is willing to be steroid tested for two.

“You publicly stated that I use cocaine. I do not,” White stated in a video posted via his verified Instagram account. “So I told you, you could randomly cocaine test me for the next ten years. I believe that you’re a cheater, and I believe that you use steroids. So I want to randomly steroid test you for the next two years. And that thing that you came out with today? Nobody on earth thinks that you really wrote that. You’re too stupid.”

“That thing” was Paul’s list of demands, which in addition to revenue sharing and the UFC’s base pay, included a demand that the UFC provide long term health care for its fighters.

White then went on to put Paul and his manager, Nakisa Bidarian — who happens to be the former Chief Financial Officer of the UFC, and who was with the company from 2011 to 2016 — on blast for struggling to sell Pay-Per-Views.

White wound up calling his former CFO “that guy used to be an accountant to me.” On the Paul front, the UFC President suggested he was calling out those who were actual box office draws.

“For those of you that don’t know, if you’ve ever watched one of [Paul’s] fights and you see when they do the staredown, the guy that’s standing in the middle with the warlock nose and the warlock wart on his face, apparently that’s his manager, and that guy used to be an accountant to me. And let’s just say this: he no longer works for me, and I think he’s a scumbag. But, if you two think that you can do it better than we do, we’re doing this whole thing wrong, you can treat the fighters better than we do, knock yourselves out. Go start your own business. It’s easy to do, get the warlock [Bidarian] on it. The warlock can get it started for you. What you and the warlock should be focused on is your business. You’re tanking. You can’t sell Pay-Per-Views. You’re calling out Jorge Masvidal because he’s a Pay-Per-View superstar. Nate Diaz. Conor McGregor. Mike Tyson. These are all superstars. You’re not. You can’t sell Pay-Per-Views.”

Paul’s recent rematch with Tyron Woodley was reportedly a flop on PPV, at least with traditional providers. Final numbers including streaming have yet to be released.

White finished his video again issuing a challenge to Paul to undergo drug testing. “You do whatever the hell you want to do. I’m ready to roll, buddy. I don’t use cocaine. Do you use steroids? Let’s do this Jake.”