UFC CEO, Dana White, recently confessed being stunned at the outcome of the bout between former UFC heavyweight champion, Francis Ngannou, and heavyweight boxing champion, Tyson Fury. Despite his mixed feelings towards Ngannou, White couldn’t help but give respect to the ex-UFC heavyweight champ for going toe-to-toe with Fury and lasting the scheduled 10 rounds, a feat he described as ‘crazy’ during an appearance on Donald Trump Jr.’s Triggered video podcast.

The gist of his amazement was not unattached to his initial dismissal of the fight as a gimmick bout that Ngannou had miscalculated in choosing over re-signing with UFC. White found it almost unbelievable that Ngannou pulled off a 10 round slugfest against the revered Fury. Comparing UFC fighters who crossed over to boxing, he pointed out, “He just went 10 rounds with Tyson Fury. Conor McGregor made it 9 or 10 with Floyd. Anthony Pettis just beat Roy Jones Jr. I know Roy is friggin’ 60 years old or whatever, but I don’t know what the hell is going on. It’s crazy.”

Discussing Ngannou’s transition to boxing and potential future defections of UFC fighters for more lucrative paydays, White echoed a surprisingly equanimous sentiment. “At some point, everybody is going to move on. Everybody has to do what’s right for them and make money for their families; so whatever they’ve got to do, they’ve got to do”, he said.

This, however, did not mean that White was willing to provide fighters with boxing opportunities, dismissing the idea of UFC venturing into the boxing promotion business. Talking about the structure of the boxing industry, he stated emphatically, “Every time I get on the phone with one of these boxing guys, I go, ‘What the f*** am I doing?’ These guys are all horrible to deal with.”

Trump Jr. further pointed out the potential corruption creeping into the sport due to its reward scheme. Unlike UFC, where fighters earn between 15-20% of the revenue, boxing promoters take a less share of the profits than fighters. In a quite instructive response, White highlighted the essence of adopting a business model in sports. When you talk about the NFL, NBA, MLB, they took football, basketball, and baseball, and created a business out of it. White concluded, reiterating his reservations about boxing’s structure, “That’s what we did with fighting and it just can’t be done with boxing.”


Don’t get me wrong, I respect Ngannou and his achievement, but Tyson Fury wasn’t at his best during the fight. This was more of an exhibition than a competitive bout. Fury would’ve knocked him out in two rounds if it was for a world title.

Yeah, but you can’t just discredit Ngannou for lasting 10 rounds with the gypsy king. It’s not something an ordinary pound for pound UFC walking wrecking ball would achieve!

Come on, let’s not fool ourselves here! When has the UFC heavyweight division had talent like Ngannou? The guy is a monster who could shut down anyone on his night.

I agree. Ngannou’s achievement is huge! Doesn’t matter how anyone paints it. Boxing requires a different set of skills, it’s an entirely different fight game, and for a UFC champ to make such transition flawlessly that just speaks volumes.

But guys, let’s be real here. Doesn’t this just highlight how much more money there is in boxing? Isn’t this whole thing just proving Dana White wrong? He’s always bragging about how UFC doesn’t need to pay the fighters more.

You got a point there. Boxing pays more, and Dana has to accept that. He doesn’t get boxing, and he admits to it. He might not like it, but it’s probably better that UFC stays clear of the boxing world.

Dana White can say whatever he wants, but the fact is, he lost a top fighter to boxing. And for Ngannou to last 10 rounds with Fury, that’s a big slap to White’s face. Maybe he should reevaluate how he treats his fighters!

Can we all agree that White is just sour about the situation? He lost Ngannou over money issues then the guy goes and stays 10 rounds with one of the best heavyweights in boxing history. He doesn’t want to admit that his fighters have the potential to thrive outside UFC.

But on the other hand, White’s got a point about boxing promoters. It’s a nasty business and treating it as just a sport would invalidate all the dirty stuff they do behind the scenes. If UFC tried to enter this business, they would likely not make it very far.

True, jumping into boxing might not be the best decision for UFC as a promotion. They already have a successful MMA model. But what about the fighters? Shouldn’t they have the freedom to look for better paydays wherever they can?

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