(Lesnar: title belt, stitches, and all. Photo courtesy of Sherdog.)
Dana White and the cast of fighters from UFC 91 were surprisingly forthcoming at the post-fight press conference on Saturday night, with one exception. Near the end of the Q & A session, a reporter asked Brock Lesnar what the essential differences were between being a UFC employee and a WWE one, from a business standpoint.
“Don’t answer that question,” White said to his new heavyweight champ, only half-jokingly. Lesnar said he wouldn’t. It got a laugh. Seems like these two are going to get along just fine. When someone brought up the possible Kimbo Slice-Brock Lesnar comparison, based more on the number of pro fights each man had than the quality, White was quick to shoot it down.
“It drove me crazy when people would compare him to Kimbo Slice. If I had hair I’d pull it out. He’s far from Kimbo Slice.”
“I don’t even know that guy,” said Lesnar, who had already claimed not to “have the internet” or even read newspapers when asked if he was discouraged by critics in the press. “Who is he?”
“You’re lucky,” said White.
But the most interesting disclosures on the night came from White, who admitted that the UFC was “not very close” to signing a network deal “with the market like this,” then proceeded to explain why that was just fine with him.
“The networks are so strong they pretty much tell you the deal you’re going to get whether you like it or not. We don’t need it. We’re happy as hell to be on Spike TV. When the right deal comes, we’ll take it.”
White also spoke about how impressed he was with the performance from middleweight Demian Maia.
“After his fight tonight Joe Silva and I were talking about him. We’re making some moves in the 185-pound division and we’re thinking of him.”
Asked if that meant Maia might find himself as a coach on The Ultimate Fighter, White smirked and responded, “Could be.”
Ex-champ Randy Couture was in as good of spirits as can be expected, considering the many discolored lumps on his face. He said he thought he was doing well and never felt the punch that dropped him, and thought he has successfully avoided it.
“It’s one thing to find guys that are big and heavy, but another to find guys with 85-inch reach. I slipped that son of a bitch, but just not enough.”
Asked if there was anything that surprised him about Lesnar, Couture responded “the go-go Gadget arms.”
“The only thing that was going through my mind was I threw about forty right hands and I was wondering when the ref was going to stop it,” Lesnar said of the bout’s ending. “Then I thought Randy was going to do superman on me and stand up.”
Couture wouldn’t say what was next for him. Lesnar was more forthright, saying he felt he needed a rematch with Frank Mir and calling the UFC heavyweight championship victory one of his proudest accomplishments.
“My first NCAA title meant a lot to me, but this, I never expected this in my wildest dreams. I don’t know what to say.”
The press conference finally came to a close when White’s publicist told him that he had to leave in order to do that evening’s Sportscenter.
White was more than happy to oblige, saying, “I thought I’d never hear that.”