22 months ago, Dana White, clad in a tight, black long-sleeved t-shirt, was greeted outside of a nightclub by dim streetlights and an inquiring TMZ paparazzo hoping to squeeze out enough banter from the UFC President to warrant a successful payday.
After a fumbling, clumsy question about Cain Velasquez's health, a jet-black SUV rolled up to whisk White away. Time was running short and the guy had to get something worthwhile, so he blurted out one last-ditch attempt.
"When are we going to see women in the UFC, dude?" he asked in the most professional way someone can ask and still end their sentence with ‘dude.'
"Never." White said flatly, before chuckling to himself at the thought and climbing into the back of the vehicle.
Well, how quickly things can change.
It's no secret that White has taken a liking to Strikeforce superstar Ronda Rousey, appearing with the champion at red carpets and events across the country. Now, through a combination of dazzling performances and savvy self-marketing, "The Rowdy One" has somehow accomplished the impossible.
"I absolutely, positively would bring Ronda Rousey into the UFC," White declared over the weekend.
"I think she's f--king awesome. I think she's mean. I think she's nasty. She's a real fighter and I like watching her fight. I think there can be some fun fights with Ronda ... and some of the other women too. But you'd have to do some one-offs."
White went on to clarify that it wasn't as if he'd actually changed his position on women's MMA, saying "it's not deep enough to have a complete weight division and put on fights all the time." But still, given the increasingly rocky relationship between Zuffa and Showtime, and the potential impending demise of Strikeforce, it suddenly doesn't seem too far-fetched to see a Rousey vs. Cyborg superfight adorning a UFC event poster.
6 MUST-READ STORIES
White would 'absolutely' bring Rousey into UFC. Speaking with reporters last week, UFC President Dana White revealed he "absolutely, positively would bring Ronda Rousey into the UFC" for a few one-off fights.
Guida still believes he beat Maynard. Despite dropping to featherweight, perennial contender Clay "The Carpenter" Guida still adamantly believes he defeated Gray Maynard in UFC on FX 4's infamous main event. Said Guida, "He still knows what happened in the cage that evening."
The MMA hour. Ariel Helwani and The MMA Hour return with a star-studded lineup featuring actor Kevin James, Brad Pickett, Forrest Griffin, Clay Guida, Frank Shamrock and David Loiseau.
TUF Brazil 2 casting call. The UFC is holding an open casting call for the second season of The Ultimate Fighter: Brazil on Sunday, October 14, 2012 at the Hotel Windsor in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Lightweights and welterweights between the ages of 18 and 35, with a minimum of three professional fights and no past UFC experience are invited to attend.
Griffin failed drug test after UFC 101. Former UFC light heavyweight champion Forrest Griffin revealed he took the anti-anxiety medication Xanax the night before his notorious UFC 101 fight against Anderson Silva. Griffin failed the ensuing post-fight drug test, though the results were never made public by the Pennsylvania State Athletic Commission.
Torres vs. Moraes. Former WEC bantamweight champion Miguel Torres will make his World Series of Fighting debut against Marlon Moraes on Nov. 3, 2012 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
I don't know who Tiger Bonds is, but he just got old-school handled by Karo Parisyan this past weekend.
Our good friend Zombie Prophet is back with another heaping helping of Tuesday morning violence, this time featuring a playlist composed of nearly every Anderson Silva fight outside of PRIDE and the UFC, plus a few extras Zuffa has made available online. There's a ton to check out here, so if you like this sort of thing help him out and subscribe to the MMA Nation YouTube channel.
If you've ever wondered what snapping another human's arm in half feels like, the guys over at MiddleEasy gave Ronda Rousey the opportunity to describe it in great, great detail.
Another overlooked gem from this past weekend: Aleksander Emelianenko takes on Konstantin Gluhov in the bloody and brutal main event of M-1 Challenge 34. Say what you want about his brother, but personally, I'd still love to see Aleks find his way over to the UFC.
SOMETIMES THE TRUTH DOESN'T ACTUALLY SET YOU FREE
Word to the wise, or whoever is reading. People praise honesty but rarely reward it.— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) October 1, 2012
Just to be clear I was not on drugs for the Sliva fight I simply appeared to be stoned— Forrest Griffin (@ForrestGriffin) October 1, 2012
DIAZ GONNA DIAZ
UFC fighters get paid NOTHING youtu.be/boAcF029Dsc— nick diaz (@nickdiaz209) October 1, 2012
BARRY IS WILLING
Pat Barry (@HypeOrDie) October 1, 2012
@theo177 WORST CHRISTMAS EVER— Pat Barry (@HypeOrDie) October 1, 2012
Announced yesterday (Monday, October 1, 2012):
- UFC on FX 6: Chad Mendes (12-1) vs. Hacran Dias (21-1-1)
- WSOF 1: Miguel Torres (40-5) vs. Marlon Moraes (8-4)
FANPOST OF THE DAY
Today's Fanpost of the Day sees BradJenkins dare to ask: UFC 154: Is Georges St. Pierre really ready?
Ever want something so bad that you told little lies to yourself so that you could believe? Maybe you really wanted to believe that you could beat your older brother in Street Fighter II so badly that you already started betting on who would have do all of the chores before the game even started.
Well I wouldn't know anything about that, but Georges St. Pierre might really want to believe that he is fully recovered and a newer more invigorated version of his previous self after coming back from an injury. Doesn't this sound familiar? Haven't we heard this all to many times?
Fighter gets injured. Fighter gets surgery. Goes through rehab. Claims he is now truly 100% or even better than he was before. Tito Ortiz anyone?
For a professional fighter, whose livelihood consists of fighting, the idea that he can no longer do this as good as he once could is as painful a realization as the weekend warrior football dad that must finally accept he's not going to be playing in the NFL or the aspiring rock musician with a wife and kids who wont be headlining Madison Square Garden, ever.
I'm not trying to shatter dreams here. Whatever I say has nothing to do with whether these dreams will eventually be realized or not. In the case of GSP, I merely make the point that he might not be in touch with reality as much as he thinks he is.
See, it is easier for Georges to believe that he is now better than he was along with having a renewed sense of enjoyment and appreciation for the sport he claims that he began to lose a passion for about the same time as his injury. The idea that he isn't 100% or far from it despite putting relentless hours into rehabbing his injured knee might be too much for the guy to handle (and possibly anyone for that matter). He's made a career out of being the best and anything less than that is not on the man's radar.
We'll have to wait and see at UFC 154 but even then, questions could still linger as to whether or not it is Georges St. Pierre or his increased quality of competition that is responsible for any changes in his performance.
Let's not forget, that Georges also has millions upon millions of dollars at stake in sponsorships and percentages of UFC PPV buys etc. Even if he weren't completely the same fighter as he once was, he has every reason to continue competing at the highest level and telling himself he's better than ever.
Heck, I'd fight Anderson Silva with a bum knee if I had a multi-million dollar pay day waiting for me on the other side.
Georges St. Pierre may truly believe he's a better version of himself than he was before his injury. I'm not so convinced.
Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me on Twitter @shaunalshatti and we'll include it in tomorrow's column.