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UFC: Dana White's Top 5 Interview Cliches and Verbal Clangers

James MacDonaldSenior Analyst IIDecember 31, 2016

UFC: Dana White's Top 5 Interview Cliches and Verbal Clangers

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    We have all seen them; they are an essential part of any pre-fight build-up. Dana White’s interviews—particularly with Ariel Helwani—are almost always compelling.

    The UFC’s head honcho speaks on a number of different issues, both relevant and orthogonal; he quashes controversy, yells about various individuals in positions of power, discusses future matchups, etc.

    In a nutshell, Dana White is wonderfully candid and engaging.

    However, when you watch enough of his interviews, you begin to pick up on certain habits and clichés he has come to unconsciously exhibit.

    Consider this a light-hearted piece on some of the aforementioned habits and the occasional verbal missteps, as a modest remedy to the funereal atmosphere that has descended on the MMA community over the past few days.

    So without any further delay, I present to you the top five Dana White interview clichés.

5. "It Is What It Is."

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    Whence did this phrase come? It appears to be an especially virulent verbal tic, most often spouted by stumped MMA personalities who are lost for words.

    Two prominent individuals within the MMA community caught it early, and their condition has gradually gotten worse over the years: Dana White and Frankie Edgar.

    Some people use the phrase as an automatic response to a narrow range of questions. Dana White, though, has turned “It is what it is” into the new “Fuhgeddaboudit!”; he has transformed a mundane, stock response into a versatile phrase.

    Dana, your wife is cheating on you. Thoughts?

    “It is what it is.”

    Dana, a cure for male pattern baldness may be decades away from being on the market. What do you have to say?

    “It is what it is.”

    Dana, the Fox numbers came back, and they are below expectations. Do you have a comment?

    “It is what it is.”

    OK, so that last one probably wouldn’t happen. The UFC President would more likely go on a 10-minute rant about the media.

    Still, I think you get the idea.

“You Guys from the Media Are Scared. I’m Not Scared of You, Internet!"

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    OK, so this one didn’t occur to the point that it became a cliché, but we did hear it several times over a relatively short period.

    Dana White addressed the Internet in a manner more befitting of an 80-year-old technophobe who believes the Internet is a single conscious entity, hell-bent on trying to destroy the UFC.

    It was a cringe-inducing moment of ignorance, as we watched him address the World Wide Web like it had given his kid a wedgie and stuffed him in a locker.

    In truth, the media didn’t really pounce on this clanger the way it should have. However, it did remind everyone that Dana White isn’t necessarily the daddy cool figure he is often thought to be.

“The Culinary Union Are Stopping Us from Getting into New York!”

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    Dana White can often be heard lamenting the Culinary Workers Union’s significant role in blocking the UFC’s potential presence in New York.

    Not since Gordon Ramsay’s rants on Hell’s Kitchen has anyone reserved so much vitriol for a collection of chefs.

    There are few things more liable to provoke a response from the UFC President than raising the issue of New York and the Culinary Union.

“What You Guys Don’t Realise Is That the Fox Deal Didn’t Start Until January.”

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    We have all heard this particular retort ad nauseum. It is Dana’s stock response whenever someone brings up the decision to only air a single fight during the first UFC on Fox.

    You’ve said it in about 50 percent of your interviews since November 2011, boss. I think we now realise that the Fox deal didn’t start until January 2012.

    Indeed, I think most of us realised it without having to be told repeatedly, as though you are addressing a community of Alzheimer’s patients.

    We get it, Mr. President. But we still think it was a silly decision air only one fight.

“Steve Mazzagatti Should Never Be Allowed to Referee a Fight Ever Again!”

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    Poor Steve, with his thinly veiled ripoff pre-fight catchphrase. What did he do to deserve Dana White’s ire? Well, an endless series of screw-ups certainly did not help his cause.

    He does his best, but there is no doubt that Mazzagatti has had some howlers over the course of his officiating career.

    Most fans probably watch the fights and take very little notice of who is in charge of the action.

    Dana White isn’t one of those fans.

    The UFC President often verbally eviscerates the veteran official in post-fight interviews with Ariel Helwani.

    He does this to the extent that one wonders whether Mazzagatti stole money from him or perhaps once slapped his wife on the ass and asked for a medium-rare steak.

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