If you thought Tito decided against taking a few final shots at Dana White and the UFC at UFC 84, you were wrong. Apparently, the fireworks that everyone was anticipating happened back stage at the post-fight press conference—one Tito apparently had to force his way into. Dave Meltzer has the story.
The 33-year-old former UFC light heavyweight champion showed up, uninvited, with UFC official Jennifer Wenk asking him to leave and not cause a scene. Ortiz at first refused, but after some pleading, got up and seemed to act like he’d made his point in front of the press about not being allowed in. But when girlfriend Jenna Jameson told him to stay put, he changed his mind and went back to his seat.
Wenk, after seeing the press wanted to talk with him, agreed to give him 10 minutes before the official press conference started. That lasted about two questions before Zuffa COO Kirk Hendrick stopped the questioning. But after much discussion and a tense scene with the media that wanted to talk with him and the appearance of four Las Vegas Metropolitan police officers, they agreed to let him participate.
No video footage of the press conference has shown up on the net, at least not yet (I will update this post with it if it does). However, there were some pretty interesting comments given by Dana and Tito that we can pass along in the meantime.
“We both need some serious counseling,” said White after being asked about the tumultuous relationship between the two and about the possibility they could reach a new contract. “I don’t know if we can make a deal. We need to talk it out some place and talk with each other like grown ups. It’s hard for both of us.”
I would highly agree with White’s first statement. Tito apparently has pulled back a little on his intentions to leave the UFC (big fucking surprise), but still had strong words about how he feels.
“I don’t want to be 45 years old and still fighting in the UFC. The fighters are treated like slaves.”
That last comment was a little overboard, to say the least, but I would have to agree with the underlying argument to that statement. White apparently tried to drag all the other fighters present into the argument by claiming they were all happy to be there.
“You want to be a superstar. They want to be fighters.”
Ortiz shot back, “You want to be a superstar.”
Snap! Tito got him there. Tito may be more interested in being a star than being a champion, but Tito was just as right about Dana. The latest issue of Men’s Fitness is proof enough.
RearNakedRadio.com was able to catch up with Tito after the press conference to give his side of the press conference drama.
Still no video of Tito at the press conference but there’s still a few updates I want to pass along.
$75,000 bonus to each fighter.
- KO of the night: Wanderlei Silva
- Submission of the night: Rousimar Palhares
- Fight of the night: Goran Reljic & Wilson Gouveia
Tito offered new UFC contract two days before fight
FiveOuncesOfPain.com is passing along news that Lorenzo Fertitta approached Tito the day before the weigh-ins and offered Tito a new contract, at least according to Tito.
“Lorenzo (Ferttita) came up to me, actually, a day before the weigh-in and he’s like ‘UFC is the place you need to stay. You need to be here. We need you here.” And he was giving me the old fluff deal…”
Ortiz’s girlfriend, Jenna Jameson, then interjected and revealed that Ortiz had even received a contract offer. Rear Naked Radio followed up the revelation by asking Ortiz directly whether that was in fact the case.
“Yeah, they tried to,” Ortiz confirmed. “They try to just like, I don’t want to say bully… (But) they were trying to get my mind off of it.”
Perhaps this is the reason why Tito was being more open-minded about staying than he was in the weeks leading up to the fight. Money talks.
Sports Illustrated has a more detailed recap of what was said between Dana and Tito at the press conference. Dana started it off.
“I’m sure there are going to be a lot of Tito-Dana questions out there so let me get this out there: the stuff between Tito and me is real, this is no bull—-, we’re not trying to put on a show,” said White. “It’s very real and it’s going to take Tito and me sitting down in a room and talking and we haven’t done that in a long time. Tito and I need to sit down and talk like a couple of adults, which we’re not. We need some serious fucking counseling. We need to talk to each other and I admit it’s hard for both of us.”
At least he is admitting it. That’s a step forward. Tito followed it up with…
“Dana White as a person is an awesome guy. Dana White the businessman is an asshole. He told me, ‘The only reason the fans love you is because of me.’ I remember when I was about to negotiate my contract, Dana White says, ‘I made you and I’ll break you.’ Okay, thanks for the threat. That’s awesome.”
Dana went on talk about how he used to beat up Tito when they would spar, how Tito sucks, blah blah blah…
These two need a divorce.
Wandy, Machida, Penn, Sherk Press Conference Video
Sherk looks like a terminator with his left eye.