Dana White Jon Jones: 3 Times the UFC CEO Turned His Back on His Fighters; Unsealed Documents Reveal Offensive Tirade at the HW Goat

Published 01/15/2024, 6:15 AM EST

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Being the centerpiece of attention for all things related to the UFC must be a tiresome task. However, if anyone, Dana White has mastered it. In a recent revelation, it has been disclosed that White had problems with Jon Jones in the past and had to show a tough side to him. Notably, this is not the only time White has lost his cool because of fighters.

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Fighters generally aim to avoid falling out of favor with the CEO, but this isn’t always the case, especially for those who have achieved greater star status than the UFC itself. There have been instances where Dana White diverged from the norm and took matters into his own hands. Here are three instances where White was frustrated about the fighters.

The conflict between Jon Jones and White

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Jon Jones is arguably the most dominant fighter in the UFC, and his presence has significantly boosted reven͏ue. ͏People love to watch Jones͏, and Dana White is no exception. White consistently vouched for Jones, even stating that “Bones” is the best fighter in the world. However, everything has ͏its limits.

On May 24, 2014, tensions were running high in the UFC as Dana White found himself frustrated with Jon Jones. The plan was to set up a highly anticipated rematch between Jones and Alexander Gustafsson, who had given the reigning light heavyweight champion a run for his money seven months prior at UFC 165. In a candid conversation with Lorenzo Fertitta, White expressed his impatience with Jones, who seemed adamant about facing Daniel Cormier next instead of Gustafsson.

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The snag in negotiations for a contract extension revolved around this specific preference of Jones, leading to a standoff. Jones was unwilling to sign on the dotted line, creating a hurdle in the process.“What’s up with Jones? Did he straighten up or is he still being a scumbag?” White had divulged to Fertitta.

That is not all as even UFC’s favorite ‘Notorious’ could not dodge the head honcho’s wrath.

Conor McGregor and Dana White tussle of 2020

Conor McGregor and Dana White have a very profound relationship. White was the man who gave ‘Mystic Mac’ opportunity after opportunity which made him one of the highest paid fighters to date. Whether it was a $60000 bonus at debut or promoting his fight with Floyd Mayweather, Dana White has often gone beyond and more showing his support for McGregor. However, things went south back in 2020 when McGregor wanted to make his third comeback.

White advised a cautious approach before returning to the fighting arena. McGregor, unhappy with what he saw as a lack of respect, expressed his displeasure publicly and hinted at revealing private conversations with White on social media. This suggested a disagreement between them, as McGregor desired better treatment that matched his status in the UFC.

In an interview with ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, White revealed his dissatisfaction with McGregor. White said “We were in a really bad place then, I was really upset. It wasn’t because he (Conor McGregor) put out private messages. We were talking about another fighter.”

It is evidently obvious that White schools everyone and Francis Ngannou was no exception.

The time when White and Francis Ngannou locked horns

Dana White extended an invitation to Francis Ngannou for a title defense against Derrick Lewis just five months after Ngannou claimed the UFC heavyweight championship. Regardless, when Ngannou opted for a later date instead of the one initially proposed, the UFC president decided to sideline the reigning champion. This was the starting point of the feud as after this began a saga of tussle.

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Dana White announced an interim heavyweight fight between Derrick Lewis and Ciryl Gane. The news came as a shock to the fighter. The news left Francis Ngannou and his team blindsided, prompting the heavyweight champ to express his dissent on Twitter. Ngannou pointed out the irony, reminiscing about how he was denied an interim bout during Stipe Miocic‘s reign as champion.

Watch This Story: Francis Ngannou Breaks A Glass Door 

Ngannou’s agent Marquel Martin voiced dissatisfaction over the news. White in response said “This dude is so full of sh*t. He knows exactly what’s going on and isn’t “shocked” at all. Because we told him several times this was coming. His management is incompetent and hopefully, Francis starts taking a look at new people to help his career.” 

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This was the rise of Ngannou’s rebellious nature against the UFC. Months later after this statement Ngannou left the UFC banner to follow his boxing and MMA ambition.

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Written by:

Suryakant Das

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I'm Suryakant Das, an avid sports enthusiast from a family that cherishes the world of sports. I still vividly recall the day my father took me to watch Indian wrestling, sparking my fascination with the discipline and the aura of those warriors. Over time, my love for combat sports grew, and now, I'm a UFC writer at EssentiallySports.
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Edited by:

Joyita Das

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