Dana White Gives His Reaction to UFC 303 Co-Main Event Chaos: “Absolute Studs”

Las Vegas — It’s been well-documented over the past twelve hours or so, but the UFC 303 co-main event was an amazing scene to behold.

With the card already underway, news broke that Brian Ortega was out due to illness, and that Dan Ige, who was not supposed to fight on Saturday and had not weighed in during Friday’s official weigh-in, was stepping in to save the fight.

With Ige licensed in Nevada and set to fight in July, he breezed through medicals and weighed in at 165lbs for a catchweight fight. Lopes, to his credit, didn’t bat an eye, having already agreed to the fight with Ortega being bumped up from 145 to 155.

UFC President and CEO Dana White reacted to the chaos after all was said and done.

“When you have guys like Diego – the guys that were involved in the co-main event tonight were just absolute studs,” exclaimed White, speaking with media outlets including Cageside Press following the event. “Think about this. Diego gets the call, he’s [Brian Ortega] not going to make weight. ‘No problem, I’ll take the fight.’ That right there is already mentally challenging.”

As White pointed out, any number of fighters might turn the bout down just for an opponent missing weight.

“Then, he gets the call that [Ortega]’s out, and we want to put somebody else in. And he accepts the fight, and it’s a completely different style than he trained for. And he still takes the fight. The guy he was supposed to fight was ranked in the top three, this guy’s one above him. The mental challenges that were thrown at this kid.”

White then addressed Ige, who took the fight on just four hours or so notice. “Dan Ige, I’m assuming had already ordered the fight and was sitting at home watching the fight tonight. Now he’s in the co-main event. You couldn’t have two bigger studs than these guys tonight. Incredible.”

Following UFC 303, both fighters expressed a desire to fight at The Sphere in September. It sounds like Dana White is ready to grant those wishes.

“I do. I’ll do anything for these guys. So yeah.”

Watch the full UFC 303 post-fight press conference with Dana White above.