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UFC President Dana White Calls John Hackleman A Scumbag, In So Many Words

Chuck Liddell and John Hackleman

So remember that “war” that UFC president Dana White promised to wage if Chuck Liddell opted not to retire after losing to “Shogun” Rua at UFC 97?  Liddell has yet to officially call it quits, though he also hasn’t expressed any overwhelming desire to fight again, but this war increasingly seems like it’s between White and Liddell’s trainer, John Hackleman — not Liddell himself.  After Hackleman pointed out some of the obvious problems with White trying to make life decisions for another autonomous human being, White fired back in a talk with Sherdog:

“Obviously, John Hackleman didn’t pay his house off yet. John Hackleman needs some money, because anybody who claims they care about Chuck Liddell even a little bit would not be making these f–king statements. …He’s never been a decision-maker in Chuck’s career. I can tell you this: He didn’t make Chuck Liddell. Chuck Liddell made John Hackleman.  How many great, talented guys do you see coming out of John Hackleman’s place?  He’s no Greg Jackson. He’s no Mark DellaGrotte. He’s no American Top Team. He’s not one of the great camps. Chuck Liddell made him.”

For his part, Hackleman isn’t saying that Liddell needs to fight anymore or even that he should, but rather that it should be his choice.  Which is, you know, obviously true.  He called White a “bully” and pointed out that there was really no need to run his mouth in the press about his intentions to force Liddell into retirement out of a concern for his health.  Which is, again, true.  It’s one thing to do something out of concern for your friend, and it’s another thing to make damn sure everyone around you sees what you’re doing out of concern for your friend.

At this point, the argument is no longer really about whether Liddell should fight again.  It’s about whether he gets to decide that for himself.  Hackleman says yes.  Dana White says Hackleman’s an asshole who’s just trying to profit off his one and only successful student.  In case you hadn’t noticed by now, ad hominem attacks are basically White’s go-to move in situations like this.

Hackleman is right.  Liddell is the only guy who can decide whether he should hang it up.  Hopefully he decides that it’s the right move, but it’s got to come from him.  Retirement is like rehab: if the person doesn’t want to do it on their own, it’s probably not going to stick.


  1. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:13

    Wonder if Hackleman has a Juanito type of arrangement...check your finances Chuck.
  2. Anonymous mitch Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:14

    I gotta go with dana on this one, It takes a scumbag to point out a scumbag.
  3. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:14

    zomg first
  4. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:14

    aww no i'm not =(
  5. rickfurious Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:15

    First hehe had to say it.There will be a war chuck will want to fight again.
  6. I hate the Diaz Brothers Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:16

    Dana White needs his assk kicked! I would love to see Hack put a beating on him!
  7. NealTaflinger Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:22

    Isn't the bigger story the fact that Sherdog was credentialed at a UFC show? I hope Zuffa is on the way to normalizing relations with the Internet.
  8. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:23

    yeah i'd rather see TUF bums fight for a tenth of the price! retire chuck your not goood enough to be in the prestigious UFC with guys like houston Alexander bisping and K-sos.
  9. Tbiz Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:30

    Dana is a GOOF!~
  10. Craig O Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:31

    chuck is done, so what? sometimes people can't make the right choice so many football players.... sometimes they need a push out the door. if athlete's always made the right choice you wouldn't need trainers or agents would you....?!!!
  11. TheFeniX Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:35

    I'm just surprised someone on the Internet was able to correctly differentiate between an ad hominem and an insult. Way to go CP.
  12. i got ufc 100 tickets Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:37

    did someone really say that houston alexander was a prestigious fighter? what planet you been on?
  13. Dumb Fing Bitch Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:41

    Yeah. why are no blogs talking about the fact that Dana White TALKED TO SHERDOG!!! WTF!
  14. biohazardone Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:46

    Dana is full is shit...but I bet you that retirement is written in Chuck's contract. Before Chuck signed his last contract, there was probably a clause there that says "You will retire at the orginazation's discretion" "You will not fight for other orginazations once retirement is initiated by the UFC".....or something like that. I think chuck will really not have a choice because it is probably written in te contract.
  15. U R All GSP Nut-huggers Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:48

    dana white is a joke and he'll probably just try to stop chuck from going to another promotion by not giving chuck another ufc fight. then if chuck fights it, dana will just try to tie him up in court until chuck turns 65. dana should just stfu and stop trying to pretend he is a real life version of vince macmahon's onscreen tv character.
  16. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:49

  17. suckmycock Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:55

    Hackleman is a rotten scumbag becasue he is just looking out for his finaincial security. Dana is right, he is no Greg Jackson or American Top Team. I'm sure if Chuck changed camps way earlier, he would be a better fighter. No chuck fighting means no Pitt. Hackleman would have to start focusing on his second most successful student Jason Von Flue goddamn it.
  18. Sneaky Pete Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:55

    I think this issue brings up a real question about MMA and similar sports: Should a person of the caliber of a Chuck Liddell or say a Ricky Hatton retire when they can no longer vie for a title? I think that's what we're really saying about Chuck, right? There are half a dozen matches that could be made in his weight class that would be competitive and interesting to watch, and I'm sure Chuck feels that there are other challenges out there beyond the belt. If you want to retire someone, retire Mark Coleman, David Loiseau, or any of the Shamrocks, but not Chuck Liddell.
  19. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:57

    that was sarcasm Houston alexander really sucks
  20. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 09:59

    It should be primarily chuck's decision when to go. If he wants to hang around and tarnish his legacy in some people's eyes by getting ko'd thats his perogative. Should he retire? probably. But he also should get a new haircut. Its his head, its his career, its his life.
  21. polish Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:01

    Man that was a pretty harsh statement by Dana. I've watched Johns youtube videos and he is a cool dude, maybe not the best trainer but who cares. I side with him and his let Chuck decide theory. Dana White is power hungry egomaniac. Someone needs to bring that dude back down to earth, I seriously can't believe he said all that. I am curious how John will respond because if it were me in shoes I would be extremely offended.
  22. RRRRRoyce Gracie Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:06

    The real controversy here is that Dana White actually talked to Sherdog!
  23. SantanaDVX Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:13

    Houston Alexander one of most fail fighters. but I got to agree with Hackleman. If Chuck wants to fight again he should be able to. If his employer has a conflict of interests because he is friends then maybe he shouldnt be working there.
  24. OkFightFan Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:13

    Dana White? WHO CARES? For all we know he is just stirring the pot to make a big juicy controversial fight card for next year. Dana = $$, $$ = Dana. Dana without UFC = 0. we SHOULD have listened to Coutour a little closer?..... It's Chuck's decision. Period.
  25. Donald Trump Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:16

    the only way i think that chuck could come back if he dumped John Hackleman and gets a new trainer. i was thinking this guy was scum way before dana called it. HE IS A BAD TRAINER CHUCK CARRIED HIS ASS ALL THESE YEARS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  26. Dana white Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:20

    I've watched Johns youtube videos and he is a cool dude, maybe not the best trainer but who cares. you must be the biggest fucking retard in the world its all about training why do you think he got KO 3 fights in a roll you fuck tard.
  27. Theslothman Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:22

    2 Douchbags argue....and guess what... THEY'RE BOTH RIGHT...
  28. Jay Smith Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:26

    LMFAO @ polish saying "I've watched Johns youtube videos and he is a cool dude" Really?????? Well he's gotta be cool then. What a way to judge a persons character.
  29. Bovice Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:32

    I think Hackleman is right. Let Chuck get knocked out one more time so it'll knock some sense into (or is it out of) him about retiring.
  30. Jay Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:34

    Dana's got a point. Would we even know Hackleman if it wasn't for Chuck. I think Dana's just calling him out.
  31. Ample Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:35

    I wouldnt disagree with Dana. That john hackelmen guy tried to implement people from American Top Team cuse he knew his technique was old and crusty. It didnt work though, cant teach and old dog new tricks
  32. CAPS LOCK HAL Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:36

  33. The Diaz Brothers Are My Brothers Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:40

    I only call my brothers Bro
  34. The Diaz Brothers Are My Brothers Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:40

    I only call my brothers "Bro"
  35. Anonymous Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:41

    I am not impressed with your comment
  36. Armfarmer Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:50

    Chuck may have lost 4 of his last 5.. but look at who he's fighting. He lost to rampage (no shame there).. Jardine who gave page a run for his money, rashad (again no shame there), and Shogun (same), and he beat Wandy. Honestly I don't even think Lidell is that much worse of a fighter now than he was a couple years ago. It's not so much he's getting worse, it's the competition getting way better. He actually has to fight guys with hands these days instead of a bunch of grapplers that can't take him down. Look at who he fought when he was "in his prime".. Randy x3 (wrestler), Babalu x2 (wrestler/bjj), Horn (bjj), Tito x2 (wrestler). Do you think any of those guys would beat him today? Probably not. Chuck can still take out a lot of guys in the ufc, it's just that the lhw division is so stacked right now it's hard to win against any of the top guys no matter who you are.
  37. LoneWolf Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 10:51

    Dana White is a freaking shithead.

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 11:05

    Just watch, Tito Vs Chuck 2 on Affliction.
  39. SLAP COCKS GAL Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 11:20

    HAHAHAHAHAHA!!! Let the Kongo line begin!!!!
  40. CAPS LOCK HAL Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 11:22

  41. SLAP COCKS GAL Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 11:25

    Why would you say something so insensitive?
  42. williamshatner Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 12:11

    John Hackelman would push Dana White's shit in.
  43. Canadian Chronic Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 01:57

    Dana White is the ultimate fuckin douchebag. Is Chuck in the retirement age (65)bracket? Is he a responsible adult? Then he can make his own decisions concerning his life. I thought Chuck lived in the land of the free? Can deceide what he wants to do with his life, Whatever Hacklemans motives are(sinister, selfish or not), all the man is doing is loudly proclaiming that Chuck can deceide for himself and nobody save for his mom maybe, can tell him otherwise. Dana White is a fukken douchebag
  44. hlebtastic Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 02:33

    I think the key point here is the line "It’s one thing to do something out of concern for your friend, and it’s another thing to make damn sure everyone around you sees what you’re doing out of concern for your friend." Totally true. If Dana was really so worried about Chuck and his health he would handle this behind closed doors like mature adults. All of this posturing isn't really directed at Chuck, but at Strikeforce. What Dana is saying is Chuck is done with the UFC. And if anybody else wants to touch him they better damn know that he is serious.
  45. Kazi Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 02:38

    I agree with Canadian Chronic, whether Hackleman's motives are good or bad, it doesn't really matter, his point was right. Chuck can make his own mind up. If Dana White "cares" so much for Chuck, then let him out of his contract. DW doesn't want Chuck to be a free agent and have the ability to renegotiate his contract or leave. SO...he'll just declare that he's retiring Chuck, and leave him locked in his contract with one fight left. What would people say if Hackleman went hands off and didn't train Chuck, or take any money if he decides not to retire? DW is the worst thing in MMA. Look at the bullshit he pulls with Fedor.
  46. Bob Loblaw Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 02:38

    Chuck will never fight in the UFC again, not with this happening
  47. Brit Boy Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 03:09

    This is all such a shame. We should be celebrating a great career, and the first man to truly self promote and push his career in to the main stream. Instead all we're discussing is this nonsence. Just a damn shame. I do agree that it is no disgrace to loose to the opponents he has fought, but I think it's also sadly very true that he appears to be unable to fix his discovered weaknesses and to withstand the kind of punishment that he used to. Like any fighter he had weaknesses but his sheer ability; footwork, speed, counter-punching, etc. etc. etc. more than made up for it. But it appears the end is upon Chuck. Sure he could still beat 95% of the 205lbs in the UFC and perhaps even win a belt in lesser orgs, but is that really how we want to see a true legend bow out? Let alone the medical concerns of taking just too much punishment. Always a Legend in my book. I trust Dana will do the right thing, and Chuck can enjoy a new career in MMA outside of the ring.
  48. Kazi Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 03:41

    @ Brit Boy Trust Dana to do the right thing? We are both talking about the same Dana right? Loud mouth, sleazy vegas promoter Dana? Trusting him to do the right thing would be like trusting Don King to be honest. None if this junk is actually about Chuck's health.
  49. ncydeyourmom Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 05:56

    FUCK HACKLEMAN. He is an egocentric fuck ass. i met him in a bar in arroyo grande california(10 miles from San luis obispo. home of chuck and hackleman) and he was a fuckng cock sucker who did nothing but talk shit to people. "do you know who i am. ect...." fuck that liddell fuckin nut monkey. Thats all the fuckin prick has. Besides CHUCK IS DONE. the iceman has been melted
  50. ?CM Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 05:59

    HACKLEMAN rocks, he is the coolest coach on earth. I wish he was teaching in my gym with Team Quest, but still have a preatty good coaching team here.
  51. williamshatner Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 06:06

    "ncydeyourmom" must be Dana White's screen name.
  52. ?CM Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 06:09

    lol, that's true. can't stop loughing... too funny
  53. se7ensenses Says:

    Fri, 05/08/09 - 11:15

    I'd like to thank Chuck for kicking Toto's, oops Tito's ass. Anyone who does that is A OK in my books. That goes for you too Machida!
  54. sheep_slayer Says:

    Mon, 09/13/10 - 07:00

    Yeah Hackleman is great except that he fucks his female students and made up his credentials. Look up his record and there is NOTHING to prove his record. CHuck did make him and it's time for Chuck to move to training others and he can trump all of Hackeman's market of clients. Fuck John hackleman. It's about time someone at Dana White's level smacked hackleman down, since hackleman has been doing the same at his small town level to everyone he knows. His fucking ego outweighs his experience.
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