(‘Oh, hello there. Didn’t see you come in. Just rolling up my sleeves and inspecting this cage here. No big deal. It’s part of what I do.’)
Dana White is a man of simple tastes. He loves fighters who are neither pussies nor posers. He loves dropping F-bombs. He loves making life hell on all those who would oppose or seek to compete with him. The last one explains what he’s doing with the Tito Ortiz contract situation, and why he doesn’t mind being so open about it. Because what’s the fun of screwing with someone if they don’t know that you’re doing it? From Sergio Non’s USA Today blog:
I read recently that Tito supposedly is negotiating with UFC again. If that’s the case, how did that come about?
As part of his contract, he goes out and … I don’t know, something to do with his contract, but he’s still got his foot in the door with his contract. As part of our business practice in this crazy world these days, we — let me think how I can word this to you.
Take your time.
Yeah, probably going to have to.
I always say, we make this thing look a lot easier than it really is, and we’re definitely not going to make it easy for anybody else. We’re going to make things tough for other people.
It sounds like you’re saying basically you have certain negotiation rights with Tito.
Yup, and I’m going take them.
Given what you guys said about each in the months leading up to his last fight, how realistic is to expect Tito to ever fight in UFC again?
Listen, me and Tito didn’t say anything worse than what we said before he came back and became a coach on The Ultimate Fighter. Tito and I do not like each other. We do not. It’s 100% real, we don’t like each other at all, but it doesn’t mean we haven’t done business together before.
So basically, White is driving up the price on people like Affliction and Elite XC, most likely because Ortiz’s contract has a clause that allows him to match competitors’ offers within a certain window. Whether he’s really open to resigning Tito or whether that’s just something you say to make your intentions seem more genuine, that’s a different question. In the meantime, he can really make life hard for other promotions, and man, does he ever enjoy that.