Those tuning in last night to watch the first preliminary fight for UFC 149 no doubt took note of the animated Calgary crowd who was a raucous bunch from the opening bell on. However, by the end of the evening the audience had turned from an excited group of fans into an action-starved mob spouting boos and “boring” chants. Their anger was not lost on UFC President Dana White because, as it turns out, the outspoken executive shared their fury.
White discussed the event on Fuel TV’s post-show coverage where he praised the preliminary competitors for their performances but was far from positive when asked about the PPV-portion of the card.
“It’s not even about being the promoter. I’m a fight fan too. I was excited about this card,” said White, revealing he felt the crowd was a little too harsh on headliners Urijah Faber-Renan Barao but understood where they were coming from.
“I don’t think that the main event was a horrible fight. You’ve got two of the best fighters in the world fighting for a world title. I think it was technical and I think Renan Barao looked great,” stated White, adding, “If the undercard didn’t suck so bad people wouldn’t have been so heavy on the main event.”
“I never expected Hector Lombard to look like that. I thought (Tim) Boetsch…I thought those two would go right after each other. Cheick Kongo and (Shawn) Jordan was just disgusting. Not only that fight was disgusting but the reffing in that fight was disgusting too,” continued White, questioning official Yves Lavigne’s refusal to split Kongo-Jordan up against the fence and “make them fight”.
“This isn’t the Ultimate Clinching Championship,” White remarked, later making it clear he was concerned about the effect poor officiating may have on the long-term future of combat sports.
Watch the complete interview with an obviously frustrated White below:
PHOTO CREDIT – UFC