When UFC President Dana White responded on Twitter to a fan asking about Hall of Famer Randy Couture jumping ship and signing a broadcast deal with Spike TV with a simple, "I love it," it was hard to decipher if White was genuinely happy for his former champ or just laying the sarcasm on thick. And it turns out, neither option was entirely correct.
Meeting with the media at UFC 156's Press Day, White was asked for his thoughts on Couture's surprising departure. As is often the case, the UFC boss eschewed a diplomatic answer in his response. But instead of telling you, I'll let you listen below.
White later elaborated on his feelings toward Couture with our own Ariel Helwani, and suffice to say, it wasn't a glowing endorsement. But then again, who didn't expect that? (None of you should be raising your hands right now.)
7 MUST-READ STORIES
White responds to Couture signing with Spike. In the wake of UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture inking a broadcast deal with Spike TV, Dana White not surpringly said he was happy to never be in the Randy Couture business again, adding, "He's the furthest thing from Captain America."
Bellator 87 results. Alexander "Tiger" Sarnavskiy, David "Caveman" Rickels, Saad Awad and Will Brooks all advanced to the semifinals of the season eight's lightweight tournament with victories at Bellator 87.
UFC to institute fighter rankings. UFC officials, in conjunction with FightMetric, announced the establishment of a divisional fighter ranking system, which will be voted upon by 90 media members following each UFC event. The new policy takes effect immediately after UFC 156.
UFC 156 interviews. Catch up with Alistair Overeem, Frankie Edgar, Jose Aldo, Rashad Evans, Antonio Silva and more with our video previews ahead of Saturday night.
Weidman, Evans vie for Silva. Speaking to UOL Esporte, Ed Soares, manager of UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva, revealed that Silva would be open to fighting Chris Weidman if the event took place in his home country of Brazil. UFC President Dana White later turned down the idea, though he did confirm interest in a Rashad Evans vs. Anderson Silva title fight, provided Evans is victorious on Saturday. For his part, Evans says he would accept the bout if offered.
MMA roundtable. Luke Thomas and yours truly talk the puzzle that is Adalaide Byrd judging Aldo vs. Edgar, the ramifications of Bisping vs. Belcher, Rashad Evans potentially facing Anderson Silva and much more.
Silva shot five times. Former UFC heavyweight Assuerio Silva was shot five times outside of his gym in Curitiba, Brazil, by an alleged former associate. Silva remains hospitalized in critical condition.
Now that we've got that out of the way, feel free to slack off this morning and check out the complete pre-fight scrum with Dana White.
Antonio Silva: "You better start showing respect." Alistair Overeem: "I'm going to f------ destroy you." Now that, ladies and gentlemen, is a staredown.
This video from "MrUFCTrailers" was tweeted out by Dana White, so there's no way this was created by someone who works for the UFC.
Interesting to see almost everyone throw Jon Jones into their dream fight. Hell, even Jon Jones did it.
Side note: Gray Maynard seems like he's still stewing about that back-to-back draw/loss to Frankie Edgar. (Check out part two of this clip here.)
You know who had the most fun at UFC on FOX 6? This guy.
(HT: Bloody Elbow)
Totally unrelated to this weekend, but yes: Dan Henderson = Legend.
AN APT REACTION
So upset, learned today that R Couture is not Captain America!Always wanted to try out that shield & now I find out he doesn't even have 1— Big John McCarthy (@JohnMcCarthyMMA) February 1, 2013
AIN'T BACKING DOWN
@rossfinkelstein would love to. Would make a win that much better.— Chris Weidman (@ChrisWeidmanUFC) January 31, 2013
TRAINING HARD FOR CHAEL
Jones boys on bourbon st. #Nola instagr.am/p/VLiXilMDM-/— Jon Bones Jones (@JonnyBones) February 1, 2013
WELL THAT'S SOMETHING
@palfor03 I agree— Dana White (@danawhite) January 27, 2013
It's now accepted in the ufc now so what's the difference?"@leothomas4: @titoortiz @criscyborg it's cheating not just a mistake"— Tito Ortiz (@titoortiz) January 31, 2013
@cptgreenbeard truth is shitty— Tito Ortiz (@titoortiz) January 31, 2013
Looks like someone graduated from the Dr. Steve Brule school of marketing. Now whaddaya wanna order yah ding instagr.am/p/VINLzMtxF0/— Josh Barnett (@JoshLBarnett) January 31, 2013
Hope these rumours aren't true.— michael (@bisping) February 1, 2013
About a certain someone who I fought recently failing his drug test. I hope it's not true.— michael (@bisping) February 1, 2013
Announced yesterday (Thursday, January 31, 2013):
- UFC 159: Rustam Khabilov (15-1) vs. Yancy Medeiros (9-0)
- UFC 159: Joe Proctor (8-2) vs. Al Iaquinta (5-2-1)
FANPOST OF THE DAY
Today's Fanpost of the Daycomes courtesy of jorgesh, who writes: UFC 156 predictions: Pros pick Jose Aldo vs. Frankie Edgar
We're almost there!
It's the fight you've been waiting for and the match that has everyone interested in counting down the days until the dominant featherweight champion, Jose Aldo, engages a firm challenger and former lightweight titleholder, Frankie Edgar.
UFC 156: "Aldo vs. Edgar" marks the first pay-per-view (PPV) event Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) has put on this year.
Usually, when an epic match-up like this one comes about, the professional fighters gather to share their predictions. And this weekend's highly-anticipated title fight has inspired a wide variety of pros to give you, the fans, some insight on how the main event on Saturday night (Feb. 2, 2013) will unfold.
Hear from Dan Henderson, Pat Barry, Randy Couture and more after the jump.
Found something you'd like to see in the Morning Report? Just hit me on Twitter @shaunalshatti and we'll include it in Monday's column.