Ex-NBA Player Royce White Says He's a 'Supreme Athlete'; Contacted UFC for Fight

Paul KasabianSenior ContributorMarch 3, 2019

SACRAMENTO, CA - MARCH 26: Royce White #35 of the Sacramento Kings in a game against the New York Knicks on March 26, 2014 at Sleep Train Arena in Sacramento, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images Agreement. Mandatory Copyright Notice: Copyright 2014 NBAE (Photo by Rocky Widner/NBAE via Getty Images)
Rocky Widner/Getty Images

Former NBA player Royce White is looking to make an unprecedented move to mixed martial arts, and he's confident he can pull it off.

White, who played for the Sacramento Kings for three games in 2013-14, told Greg Rosenstein of ESPN.com on Feb. 27 that he's eyeing the UFC heavyweight belt. 

The 27-year-old also provided reasoning to TMZ Sports on Saturday explaining why he believes he can make the move.

"One thing I am is a supreme athlete, one of the best athletes in the world," White told TMZ Sports. 

"And, not just because I was drafted in the NBA or because I'm a good basketball player. But because, even for a basketball player, I was one of the most athletic, unique, talented, skilled, composed, skilled athletes in that realm."

White also said his management team has contacted the UFC.

Athletes trying their hand at different sports isn't uncommon. Bo Jackson and Deion Sanders notably played baseball and football at the same time, and Dave DeBusschere moved from the MLB to the NBA. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson was a Canadian Football League player before moving to the World Wrestling Federation.

Former NFL lineman Greg Hardy is now a professional mixed martial artist who amassed a 3-0 record before getting a UFC shot. He was disqualified after an illegal knee versus Allen Crowder, but UFC President Dana White told reporters he'll get another fight.

Basketball to MMA is a new one, however, and White would pull off an incredible feat if we was to make the move. But it's conceivable that his basketball training can help him in the Octagon.

"I've always been a fan of the fight game since I was young," White told Rosenstein. "I played point guard as a 265-pounder in the NCAA. In order to do so, not only do you have to have great court vision, you have to have great tempo and great footwork.

"Those things naturally translate to the fight game. I'm excited about it, but more so than anything, I'm excited about learning this thing that I've loved from the sidelines for so long, and applying it."

The 6'8" White is listed at 250 pounds, per Rosenstein.