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Morning Report: Dana White planning ‘something fun’ with Floyd Mayweather, details how a deal came together

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Floyd Mayweather playing to the crowd during the London stop on the MayMac World Tour. Esther Lin, Showtime

Sometimes the universe just wants something to happen and apparently what the universe wants is for Dana White and Floyd Mayweather Jr. to become business partners once again.

Last month Mayweather posted a picture of himself and Dana courtside at the Clippers-Celtics game with a caption that read, “Dana White and I working together again to bring the world another spectacular event in 2020.” But though the image immediately caused speculation, Mayweather is a promoter par excellence and has been known to embellish the truth from time to time. Not so this time apparently. Speaking on The Rich Eisen Show yesterday, White revealed that he and Mayweather do in fact have a deal for next year and that, contrary to public opinion, none of this was planned. White and Mayweather just happened to be sitting next to each other and a deal just happened.

“So me and my sons, we always hit up three or four Celtics games and then a couple playoff games every season and I got the tickets that day and who comes and is sitting right next to me? Floyd,” Dana said. “So we started cracking up and then we started talking and Floyd was like, ‘This was totally meant to happen. This was meant to be.’ And then we had a deal. We shook hands and that’s it. We’ve got a deal.”

And apparently, the opportunity almost didn’t come about in the first place. Though White says he goes to a few Celtics games very year, he had no plans to attend this one. He was in Las Vegas working when Ari Emanuel, CEO of Endeavor, the owner of the UFC) called him and asked him if he wanted his tickets for the game and the rest, as they say, is history.

“[It was] 100 percent [luck],” White said. “What’s ever crazier is Ari Emanuel called me that day and said, ‘Do you want my tickets?’ I didn’t know he was talking about the Clippers so I started looking at the schedule and the next game was January in Boston against the Lakers. I thought he was talking about the Lakers. So then it ends up that it’s the Clippers and I say, ‘You know what, I will go to the Clippers-Celtics game.’ I fly out there and my seats are right next to Floyd’s. Floyd walks in and, you know. . .”

Kismet works in mysterious ways. And though White was short on details with Rich Eisen, yesterday White also spoke with Jim Rome and gave up a few more details about what he has in the works with Mayweather, revealing that though they only have a verbal contract in place right now, the two are planning to put pen to paper early next year.

“We started talking and we literally got a deal done right there on the court,” White told Jim Rome. “We shook hands. We have a deal. And if things play out the way that Floyd and I think they will, I will probably sit down with Al Haymon in, I would say March and get a deal on paper.”

As to when this mystery event will actually happen though, combat sports fans will have to wait awhile. White says since they’re planning to hammer things out in March, he doesn’t expect the actual event to take place until the fall of 2020.

“Let’s see how the next few months play out,” White said. “We could be doing something fun probably. I think if everything goes our way, Floyd and I would be doing something in October or November.”

If everything plays out as White hopes, the end of next year could be a big one for the UFC. After all, the last time Dana White worked together with Floyd Mayweather it created one of the most lucrative one-off sporting events in history and the second-biggest Pay-Per-View event of all time.


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