I read the blogs daily and always read the comments sections where keyboard warriors can tell you an event sucks before it takes place, why B.J. Penn has no motivation, or how Cain Velasquez could have beaten Junior Dos Santos. The scenarios are endless and the accountability is non-existent.
When a UFC story breaks about a separation or contract talk breakdown, the answer is always the same. “It is Dana White’s fault,” they say, not caring that they know nothing of the details or facts (see: Fedor contract negotiations, Brittany Palmer leaving UFC, and Golden Glory fighters released).
As a lifelong New York Yankees fan, Dana’s “character” reminds me very much of George Steinbrenner (though others might say WWE star Vince McMahon). He takes care of business and makes no apologies for his style, his opinion, or his success.
I am convinced that even if he were to find a cure for cancer, the comments sections would still be overflowing with reasons to hate him.
Although I realize this opinion will not win me any fans, I feel it is time to defend Dana White on a few topics.
Dana’s post fight commentary sent the MMA writers and viewers into a bit of a frenzy.
To quote Dana in a interview immediately following the Cain Velasquez versus Junior Dos Santos fight:
“Listen, I'm no strategist and I'm nobody's coach but I don't understand why they didn't go for the shot early. They should have shot in on Junior Dos Santos knowing that he has the power early in the fight and tries to knock you out. But the truth is that Junior Dos Santos gets tired at the end of fights, you know? Here he is standing right in front of him trying to trade and bang with Junior Dos Santos and gets hit with that big right hand right behind the ear and down he goes. Down goes his heavyweight championship. I'll say it again, not saying that I'm some strategy coach but I don't know why they wouldn't take the shot on him and wrestle early.”
At face value his comments, in my opinion, are dead on.
If Randy Couture had uttered these exact words people would have been praising his insight and attributed his knowledge to the experience obtained through many battles and years in the cage. Since Dana said it, it was blasphemy and Dana secures his place as the successor to the devil himself.
For the UFC on FOX event, Dana was in the booth and providing commentary. When you provide commentary, regardless of your role within the organization, you are being paid to state your opinion. Dana did so and did so accurately.
The bigger question you would have to ask yourself is, “was he wrong?” I do not think he was.
For some reason people seem to be bothered by the fact that Dana does his video blogs(vlogs), interviews, and promotional appearances.
As the President of the UFC, “he needs to stay behind the scenes and realize that he is not part of the show.” Reality check for you….Dana White is part of the show, and a big part!! First and foremost, he is a promoter.
You know when Dana is no longer part of the show? When people stop watching his vlogs (and commenting on them a great deal), stop tuning into his interviews, and stop showing up at his promotional appearances.
If Dana “no-showed” an event it would be the buzz of the internet. People would blast him and demand an explanation for his not being present.
Like it or not, people show up to see Dana White, and this is clearly indicated by the roar of the crowd when he enters the arena.
This is one of my pet peeves.
First off, while Dana is the UFC President, he is not the sole decision maker for the organization.
Second, we all choose our profession and the fact of the matter is, if there was better pay to be had in the MMA industry, UFC fighters would be jumping ship on a regular basis, but they are not. UFC is the top of the mountain and where the most money is to be made.
This is no different than my job or any of the others out there. You are paid based upon the value you bring to the organization, whether it comes from services, selling products, or in the case of the UFC, putting asses in the seats and/or creating an interest that will motivate PPV buys.
The detractors will argue that the UFC is making so much money that they should be paying the fighters more. To this I say, show me a company where the employees make even close to a fraction of the executive level management team and/or ownership and I will show you a company that will not be around for very long.
At the most recent card, UFC 140, the highest paid fighter on the card was Tito Ortiz, who earned $450K in defeat, substantially more than even the champion in his own weight class, Jon Jones. At the bottom end on the salary grade was Mitch Clarke, who netted $4K. The reason for this disparity is Business 101. People tune in to see Tito fight. Some tune in to see him win and some to see him lose, but they tune in regardless. This is also the same reason you see big name companies sponsoring big name fighters, name recognition!
The bottom line is that if you are not advancing in your chosen profession, your salary will not increase, and it may be time to move on. I surely do not see Tito, Jon Jones, or Georges St Pierre complaining about their salaries.
Is he? I do not know because I have never met him. From my recliner I see a man trying to promote his company, and quite frankly, is doing a great job at providing great MMA entertainment on a regular basis.
2011 will wrap up with its 27th UFC event of the year, just one event shy of 2000-2004 combined. In the 11 years since being purchased by Zuffa, the UFC has presented 159 events compared to 27 in the previous seven years.
Whether you like it or not, Dana White is a big cog in the wheel of success that is the Zuffa owned UFC.
On the charitable side, his contributions have included but not been limited to, funding a child’s liver transplant, donating money to his high school, and most notably the work for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund.
The critics like to disregard all of this and focus on his public persona and the “colorful language” that Dana likes to use. To this I say, Really?
The only difference between this president and those that are not spouting off in front of the camera is, you guessed it, they are not spouting off in front of a camera and they are not doing so because nobody cares what they have to say. A good promoter will give the people what they want and as evidenced by the comments sections accompanying a Dana sound bite, they want to hear what he has to say.
Behind the boardroom doors across the country F-Bombs fly at quite a pace. The only difference with Dana is that he does not put on a politician like act when the cameras are rolling. What you see is what you get and in this case, it keeps people talking, which is always good for business.