Dana White fine if UFC gets as real as it gets on FOX 2

by John Morgan | source: mmajunkie.com

When the UFC debuted on FOX, essentially the moment that mixed martial arts was introduced to the mainstream, what the mainstream got was what UFC President Dana White jokingly referred to as jokingly referred to as "60 minutes of blabbing and 60 seconds of fighting," after Junior Dos Santos took champion Cain Velasquez out with strikes at just over the one minute mark.

The next weekend (the PPV show that JDS vs. Velasquez was pulled from) Dan Henderson and Shogun Rua engaged in a fight of the century nominee. Many fans thought then that the wrong fight was moved to UFC on FOX 1.

White immediately disagreed.

"If that fight that happened tonight went on FOX for the first time ever, let me tell you what – I would not be having a good time these last five or six days," White said. "We've got to ease our way – look, we live in this bubble, gang. We live in this bubble that the rest of the world doesn't live in and doesn't understand. We're still in an education process and educating the masses about what the sport is and what it's all about.

"Those of us who are in this room and people who have been watching this for a long time just incredibly appreciate what those two did tonight in there, and you can understand what they went through and what's going on. The rest of the world would go, 'Oh my God. What was that?'"

Now White is reporting that his initial jitters are gone, and it is going to get as real as it gets on UFC on FOX 2.

"I'm over my FOX jitters," White said at the UFC 140 post fight press con. "I'm over it. It is what it is. The bottom line is we did our introductory fight on FOX. Dude, this is what they ordered seven years of. This is it. This is what you get."

Saturday night's UFC 140 event was broadcast on pay-per-view, but it did provide a scene that even seasoned fans of the sport had trouble watching: Big Nog's broken arm. White said he's not afraid of a repeat performance on national TV.

"If you really look at it, in the last almost 11 years, that's the third (major injury)," White said. "Other than cuts and blood and stuff that's going to happen, that's the third time that something that you could get squeamish about has happened in the UFC. Third time. Two by Frank Mir – one when he popped Tim Sylvia's arm, the Corey Hill kick, still the nastiest by far, and then [Nogueira]."

The boundaries of good taste may be tested again in January, when the UFC returns to primetime with Rashad Evans vs. Phil Davis to determine the No. 1 contender to current light heavyweight champion Jon Jones. Evans and Jones have engaged in a very public war of words over the past several months, and White said "Bones" will likely be cageside for the event, and an in-octagon faceoff could potentially follow.

"Probably," White said. "I'm sure he'd like to ruin one of Rashad's evening's, anyway."

"Every once in a while, you're going to get a f--- you from somebody. It's life."

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Recent Comments »

Tad Ghostal site profile image  

12/13/11 9:59 AM by Tad Ghostal

No they don't. Lots of people don't like violence, it's natural. There's a big difference between an accidental injury/death and the violence that is involved in a prizefight. Dana likes to use that analogy of a park with a baseball, basketball, football game and a fight happening at the same time, more people will pay attention to the fight. It's true but how many enjoy what they see?On the other hand, there's a lot of non-violent grappling in MMA which might put off some fight fans.It's also a lot easier to understand how difficult it is to throw/catch/hit a ball or drive a car really fast than it is to e.g. submit someone.

Soup and Beer site profile image  

12/13/11 9:55 AM by Soup and Beer

 It's just political speak.  Dana would have loved it if the FOX debut would have shown that much action.  Remember, the non stop bloody brawl with the Griffen/Bonnar turned the UFC into a billion dollar company.  If that pivotal fight would have been a boring 3 round lay and pray, the UFC would have folded many years ago.

sawdusk site profile image  

12/13/11 9:37 AM by sawdusk

not following White's logic on rua and hendo not being a fantastic Fox debut... "White, himself, admitted the gut-wrenching battle between Henderson and Rua, which served as the main event of November's UFC 139 fight card, would not likely have gone over well with casual consumers unfamiliar with the sport. Sure, the 25-minute affair showcased the heart and courage of both competitors, but it also featured two guys mercilessly pounding on each other for five bloody rounds."griffin vs bonnar ring a bell?at any rate, the best thing to come of this is Fox 2 will have multiple bouts aired.

Kirik site profile image  

12/13/11 9:20 AM by Kirik

 I always thought that a good comparison was auto racing, the most popular spectator sport in the USA. If it didn't exist, and someone started it, everyone would think it was nuts. They's do WHOA don't you know there are speed limits for a reason? Driving kills 50k people EVERY YEAR. And you want to double that, or triple it. GO directly to JAIL with THAT thought. But people are used to car racing and understand it. So give it a little time, the public will come around. They have to.

The Engineer site profile image  

12/13/11 9:17 AM by The Engineer

Unfortunately many make snap judgments and will dismiss it as barbarism without spending the time it takes to understand the difference. Luckily MMA is past the point of those people really impacting the sports growth. That is unless those people decide to start trying to rally some otherwise worthless politicians looking for a cause to latch onto to get some publicity.

the professor of mma site profile image  

12/12/11 5:58 PM by the professor of mma

Part of educating the public is creating an understanding of what superficial injuries are versus serious injuries. Obviously, big Nog's injury falls in the category of serious, but most of the massively bloody injuries fall in the category of superficial, especially the seemingly nasty head wounds(which bleed far more than cuts anywhere else on the body).One of America's most mainstream sports, football, has the highest injury rate in athletic competition. Football injuries are far easier to digest for the viewers because the wounds are normally buried under pounds of equipment or padding. Race cars....drivers die all the time. Where is the outcry? Where is the protest? Once again, easier to dismiss because we don't have to directly view the impact that kills. MMA is so honest, so real...there is no protective gear screening what we see. Shit, hockey fans will watch a dull game in the hopes of seeing a fist fight. It has become part of hockey stats. IMO, when people see fighters get injured and then return to fight in a few months, fans who sit on the fence will fall into the viewership numbers when they understand that what they see is far worse than what it actually is.