UFC president Dana White talks about The Ultimate Fighter: Live
Dana White doesn't quit. It had been a long day, with preparations for UFC 146 winding down all of last Friday and then, in the late Las Vegas afternoon, the weigh-ins at the MGM Grand Garden Arena getting the show started. But that wasn't the end of a day's work for the UFC president. His presence also was required in the evening for the final regular episode of
Even after Michael Chiesa and Al Iaquinta had punched their tickets to this Friday's finale, even after White had sent them and all of the rest of the young fighters into the wilds of Las Vegas after being sequestered in a no-TV, no-Internet, no-contact-with-the-outside-world house for three months, even after the fight organization had taped some interviews with the FX crew to be used as teasers for Friday's fight telecast (9 p.m. ET, FX) -- even after all of that, White had the time, energy and enthusiasm to chat with a group of writers about
In a far-ranging interview, White talked about the realities of reality TV -- everything from risks to rewards, from fighting to being goofy, from telling a lie to keeping a secret. He started with nightmares, a word he used on the final
So for being in the position that we're all in, FX has been fantastic. They love the brand as much as we do, and they want to do what's best for everybody. This thing just got sprung on Fox as a whole. So there are some things that just need to be worked out. You know, the fans, the media, everybody is [expletive] harsh, starts wanting to hammer everybody and go, "Oh, it's [expletive] Friday night, and this sucks and that sucks." It's all a work in progress. It's not black and white, It's not as simple as it seems. "Oh, FX, they're [expletive] stupid. Why would they throw it on Friday night?" Because that's the night they had. It's the only night they had.
They sell all that s---, you know? This isn't Spike, you know what I mean? On Spike, we had the freedom to go wherever we wanted to. What, are we gonna bump
To "recharge the brand" and all this s---? You know, people were asking me, "Do you think this new format works?" Somebody asked me this the other day. And seriously, guys, sometimes I have a hard time not [expletive] going off when I get these kinds of [expletive] questions. "So this new format on
The reality is, when you get the goofy guys, it is what it is. We picked this guy and he's a [expletive] idiot. What are we gonna do? He's in the show. But then you get guys who have serious emotional problems and a lot of other things, but are real fighters, like Chris Leben, which I think is fascinating to watch. When you have a guy like Chris Leben, who is so self-destructive and can fly off the handle, yet is a very tough, good fighter that people like to watch. So that's what I'm saying: We've got to figure this thing out, what is the right combination.
But I do love live. Live works. The thing that I love about live, and if you're a fight fan, a sports fan or you like to bet: The sports books have this on. All of the sports books have this now. You go in to the sports book for
And I'm talking about a small segment of lunatic, gambling ... me. That's how I was when I was a fight fan. It was all about studying everything that's going on leading up to the fight -- who's what, what did he weigh in at and what do you think
So then we had Menjuvar, Barão, [Michael] McDonald and [Brad] Pickett all thinking they were flying to Las Vegas. They all thought they were. Menjivar thought his tickets were being booked and he was coming to Las Vegas. And the Menjivar thing never got out, so Urijah is busting my balls about it and everything else. He never did tell. He didn't tell anybody.