Don't hold your breath waiting for so-called 'superfights' in the UFC. According to UFC president Dana White, the window may have closed on that pipe dream.
"This whole superfight thing has been destroyed," White told media during Thursday's media scrum. "I think it's dead now. It was fun for a little while. I think it's over."
White's comments seemingly put to rest the endless debate over which UFC champ would rise to rule them all in some sort of catch weight exhibition match. Due to years of dominance from welterweight and middleweight champions Georges St-Pierre and Anderson Silva, talk of getting them into the cage together reached a fevered pitch the past few years. With the emergence of light heavyweight champion Jon Jones, Silva now had another option, likely better suited for him given his one-offs at 205lbs.
Silva, the chain holding this entire notion together, snapped this past July at UFC 162 when Chris Weidman connected on Silva, handing The Spider his first UFC loss. At least Weidman had the forethought to apologize for ruining the UFC's plans.
With no long-standing champion to face either St-Pierre or Jones, White and Co. sound soured on the concept in general. Even so, Jones declared Tuesday that he'd be confident facing the elite of the UFC's heavyweight division, including champion Cain Velasquez. With Jones racking up title defenses and the world scanning the horizon for any sort of challenge to Velasquez, it's conceivable the UFC reconsiders its posture on superfights sooner than later.
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It's been awhile.
I respect fighters like Beltran.. But dude ain't ready 4 tomorrow. http://t.co/Lkcj4kga69— Quinton Jackson (@Rampage4real) November 14, 2013
@Rampage4real you better kickass tomorrow. So I can still make you twerk!!— Tito Ortiz (@titoortiz) November 14, 2013
I think we'll have a lot to look forward to.
Tim Kennedy (@TimKennedyMMA) November 15, 2013
I am on a mission and I will not let any one take my focus away!!!! Essa é minha missão e não deixarei... http://t.co/mEyG1sLRd1— Vitor Belfort (@vitorbelfort) November 14, 2013
Keep your head on a swivel out there.
One of the most ignorant & sickening things I've heard in the news. I feel compelled to do something about this. http://t.co/hz59P3zPZY— Kenny Florian (@kennyflorian) November 14, 2013
These Jersey kids playing A game called knockout.. disgusting. Pussies sneaking up and KOing innocent people.— Jeff Curran (@BigFrogBJJ) November 15, 2013
What the hell is wrong with kids these days!! This new game "knock out" is going to get one of these kids hurt badly or worst!— Michael Johnson (@FollowTheMenace) November 14, 2013
Probably a good thing.
More nervous about this presser than any fight...— Tim Elliott (@TElliott125) November 14, 2013
Announced yesterday (Nov. 14 2013)
cancelled Jon Jones vs. Glover Teixeira at UFC 170
T.J. Dillashaw vs. Mike Easton at UFC Fight Night 35
FANPOST OF THE DAY
Today's Fanpost of the Day comes via griff111.
"Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things."
- Winston Churchill
Now hear me out. Hold the vitriol till you read the entire article if possible. I know us MMA fans can be a little sensitive to criticism, but playing devils advocate can stimulate the discussion, and find solutions to problems; or indicate that perceived problems are phantoms, and not worth worrying our little heads over.
Dana White was hit with a dose of reality recently at a football game, when someone in his core demographic of 18 to 35 years old struck up a conversation asking what it was he did. After saying those three famous letters White probably expected some sort of sign of recognition from his new friend. Instead White was met with a blank stare and questions which indicated that the UFC might as well be the XYZ to this guy. He had no knowledge of the MMA powerhouse. For someone who is as much of a star in the MMA world as his fighters, this must have been a somewhat humbling experience. So, aspirations to be bigger than the NFL may have to be parked for a while.
However, the bigger question for me as someone from the UK is not whether the sport will ever be a mainstream US sport, but whether it'll ever be a worldwide mainstream sport. Obviously, I'm thinking about this from the UK viewpoint, but the questions are easily transferable to other markets, and UK in the post is easily replaced with Sweden, Ireland etc.
Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me up on Twitter @SaintMMA and we'll include it in tomorrow's column.