LAS VEGAS -- File this under "not one of the boss's best ideas."
In speaking with the media at the UFC 155 post-fight press conference, Dana White took the fall for pushing to get Leben on the main card.
"I made a mistake putting [Leben] on the main card," White admitted, "I should have had him on the undercard."
White briefly touched upon the issues Leben has faced over the years and had a tone in his voice that suggested he is still concerned about those problems.
“Chris Leben loves to fight; there’s no doubt about that. The biggest challenge in Chris Leben’s life is battling his own demons, and we try to help him as much as we can."
While Leben's layoff may have contributed to his ineffectiveness, there was also the issue of potentially having a bad weight cut. Our very own Jeremy Botter noted this the day before the fight:
Saw Leben earlier. Looked like he had a horrific weight cut. If you liked Brunson before, you should like him even more now.
This was nowhere near the same Leben we've seen earn four Knockout of the Night and two Fight of the Night honors over his seven-plus year UFC career.
White added, “He’s been off for personal problems for a while, has had a lot of time off, and he looked slow tonight. I wasn’t crazy about that fight, that was not my favorite fight of the night; that’s for damn sure.”
Hopefully Leben did just have ring rust and/or a bad weight cut. "The Crippler" has now lost three of his last four fights and will need to turn things around in his next fight to have any shot of moving up the ranks.
*All quotes obtained first hand by B/R MMA
Joe Chacon is a featured columnist for Bleacher Report and a staff writer for Operation Sports. You can follow him on Twitter @JoeChacon.