It may be a feud that will never lead to an in-ring conclusion, but the ongoing verbal fireworks between UFC president Dana White and MMA legend Frank Shamrock has continued on. Just days prior to UFC 121, White had some choice words for Shamrock, and now Shamrock has fired back.
The two have not gotten along for years, but the most recent flare-up began during a recent edition of MMA Fighting's The MMA Hour, during which Shamrock laid some of the blame for the sport not being sanctioned in New York on White.
Shamrock explained that with White's brashness and a speaking style heavy on expletives, that perhaps he was not the best representative for the sport despite being its most famous.
"The face of our sport is Dana White and out here in conservative New York, the way people think, bald-headed, tattooed, swearing people are just not a good representative of our brand, and unfortunately people think that Dana White speaks for MMA, and they're confused," Shamrock said then. "They don't know he speaks for the UFC. They think he speaks for the entire sport and [they think] the entire sport is made up of Dana Whites."
At UFC 121, MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani gave White a chance to respond, and he did so, calling Shamrock an "irrelevant jackass," "two-faced" and a liar. White also divulged that Shamrock recently flew to Las Vegas to meet with him.
"What have you done for mixed martial arts in the last 10 years?" White said. "What have you done? You haven't done anything. You're just a liar and a guy that's trying to keep himself relevant."
In an e-mail sent to MMA Fighting, Shamrock rebutted White's criticisms and reaffirmed his belief that White is a bad frontman for the expanding MMA movement.
"Wow and false, is all that I can say about Dana's comments that I am a two-faced liar and further, what a bully and terrible example of combat sports meets corporate America," Shamrock wrote.
Shamrock explained that he visited White essentially to make peace.
"We parted with nothing more than a clear understanding of our different views and brands," said Shamrock, who recently retired and is in the process of moving to New York with plans to help lobby for MMA sanctioning.
"Dana's recent comments on AOL are ridiculous and insulting and I am sad to see them associated with our sport," he continued. "We will never be a true sport, or art for that matter, until we are free to speak our hearts and minds. I was being genuinely honest about my beliefs and dreams and did not attack, insult, curse or become angry with him in any way. And yet in return, I was attacked, ridiculed and bullied, and finally, my character questioned publically."
Shamrock went on to say that White is an example of the bullying epidemic that is a current topic of national attention.
"My comments in reply to Mr. White's insulting tirade is that mixed martial arts breeds confidence, builds character and creates strong diverse communities whose foundation is honor, respect and discipline, and Dana White, I refuse to be bullied by you, and further, I respect a man who truthfully stands up and fights for his family with honor," he wrote.
"Anytime you want to become a real man and not a bully, you let me know," he continued. "I would [be] happy to oblige you with [a] personal introduction to Shamrock MMA."