UFC President Dana White is hellbent on getting the UFC back up and running in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic, starting with a whopping four events between now and the end of May.
The UFC boss’s determination to keep his show on the road has led to a fair amount of backlash, much of which stems from a belief that he’s prioritizing profit over safety.
During a recent Q&A with Sports Illustrated, White responded to perceptions that he’s money crazy.
“One hundred percent [I’m being mischaracterized],” White said. “Absolutely. That’s what I’m always painted as. … Corporate greed. … I’m a f**king money monger. I’m this and that. I’m like: Do you f**king people understand that I don’t have to do this? I could’ve f**king retired five years ago. I’m not doing this because I need the money. I haven’t laid off one employee. Everybody is getting paid. Fighters that were supposed to fight: If they didn’t get their fight, they’re getting some money, too. It isn’t like we’re about to go bankrupt over here, and if I don’t pull off this fight on May 9 we’re f**ked.”
In the same Q&A, White acknowledged that criticism is probably inevitable, no matter what he does.
“Depends what channel you listen to,” White said. “Completely different information. Don’t even go on the internet, it’s all over the map. You have people saying if you go here or there you’re gonna get this thing and you’re gonna die. You have other people saying it’s a conspiracy to get rid of Trump. That it’s man-made. We don’t really know that much more about the coronavirus than we did four months ago.”
The next UFC card on the calendar is UFC 249, which goes down this Saturday in Jacksonville, Florida. White and the UFC will then promote three more events on the 13, 16 and 23 of May, also in Jacksonville.
What do you think of these comments from Dana White?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.com on 5/5/2020.