Ricco Rodriguez: There were some talks to possibly get into the UFC, but that opportunity is just not available, and I just don’t ever see myself returning to the UFC.
Dana holds a grudge pretty well, and he has his reasons, and I don’t blame him. I understand what I did at that time, and it was a tough pill to swallow and he has every right to be upset …The truth of the matter is, is that I single-handedly almost tore down the UFC at one point in my career ... you’ll probably be the first one that I’ll ever admit this to.
I wore a henna tattoo in my fight against Randy Couture, and at that time, the UFC was literally just building itself, we were only at 60,000 pay-per-view purchases [per show]. The Mohegan Sun and the Indian tribe allowed that fight to go on, and the truth is, they almost stopped that fight from happening. If that would have been the case, then I would have single-handedly destroyed the UFC.
Lorenzo Fertitta, they own casinos, so when you own a casino, you have certain laws that are very strict …When the opportunity presented itself to me ... I gambled (100k from Golden Palace for the henna tatoo) on myself and I won that fight. And I made more than the UFC would have ever paid me. The UFC paid me $30,000 to show and $30,000 to win, and I put all my money on myself and I won half a million.
... this is why Dana White will never let me back in the UFC, and I totally understand. I respect that, and it is what it is.
So, I don’t ask anybody to feel sorry for me, and I understand why Dana White is very upset, and people have to understand that I almost single-handedly destroyed the UFC … and this is the story. And hopefully you can share it in the most polite way possible.
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