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UFC Twitter Mailbag: Vera vs. Hamill, Dana White in a Gossip Column, More

Our new UFC twitter mailbag features questions about the UFC 102 light heavyweight fight between Brandon Vera and Matt Hamill, Dana White's celebrity status and, of course, the question that never seems to go away about the possibility of Fedor Emelianenko signing with the UFC. Your questions and my answers are below.

Your thoughts on Vera v. Hamill? --drsippi
I really like this fight a lot, and I think it comes down to how much Hamill's stand-up game has improved. Hamill was a somewhat one-dimensional wrestler early in his career, but in his last couple fights I've been impressed with his kickboxing skills. I'm not sure he's quite ready to stand and trade with Vera, though, and I think Vera probably wins this one. I must say, UFC 102 is one of the deepest cards I can remember; the fact that Vera vs. Hamill is planned as the first fight of the pay-per-view broadcast shows how stacked this card is.

What does it say about the UFC that Dana White was mentioned in the gossip column of the New York Daily News? --MMAUSA
Yes, it's true: Dana White was mentioned in a gossip column, right between J-Lo and Steve Martin. What I think it says about the UFC is that for all the fame of Brock Lesnar and Chuck Liddell, the promotion's biggest star is still its president, Dana White. He's the guy who has the most followers on Twitter, he's the guy whose video blogs get hundreds of thousands of views on YouTube, and he's the guy who has made the UFC into what it is. And that makes him a big enough celebrity, I guess, that even while MMA remains illegal in New York, Big Apple gossip columnists are keeping tabs on him.

Many rumors indicated Fedor is asking for many far-fetched conditions in order to sign. Do you find these realistic? --Cobberto

We've all heard some of these ridiculous requests that Fedor's management allegedly asked of the UFC, like building an arena in Russia. Obviously, the UFC isn't going to do that for any fighter. But I think, for the most part, the differences between Fedor and the UFC can be resolved. If Fedor wants to do a sambo exhibition between fights, I think the UFC can let that slide, and if the UFC wants to lock Fedor into a long-term deal, I think Fedor can do that as long as the UFC makes it worth his while. The real reason I think Fedor signing with the UFC is unlikely is that I just don't think Fedor particularly likes the UFC, and I think Fedor's managers -- whom Fedor trusts implicitly -- really dislike the UFC. That's the big impediment to these negotiations, which is why I think it would be a big step for Fedor to just sit down with Dana White and/or Lorenzo Fertitta for a meeting.

I heard you on Breen's show. I think you definitely earned some new fans. Looking forward to your blogs/tweets. --PDXFighter

Thanks. I enjoyed doing The Jordan Breen Show. A great opportunity to discuss, among other things, how great Twitter is for MMA fans.

Want to be part of our next UFC Twitter mailbag? Post a question or comment on Twitter, and be sure to start it with @MichaelDavSmith.