Glass-Jawed Fight Fans Can't Handle Waleed Aly's Basic Questions To UFC Boss
Since when is asking questions a crime?
They're tough, these UFC fans.
They're into a sport where people's faces are smashed until they look like the entrée to a meal of proverbial dropped pie, then they turn to jelly when a journalist dares do his job, asking straight questions to the sport's boss.
Last night, Waleed Aly interviewed UFC supremo Dana White on The Project. White is in Australia promoting UFC Fight Night 142 in Adelaide, which happens on December 2 and which you can watch on Network 10.
Things got testy when Aly asked White about some infamous recent UFC moments, like the time when the UFC's most famous protagonist/showman Conor McGregor attacked a bus full of fighters.
"You love this stuff, it's great for promotions, right?" Aly said.
“We don’t need that type of stuff to sell a fight," White responded.
Aly's questions as to whether the UFC deliberately scripts crazy stunts to generate public interest did not please many people.
But at the risk of sounding like a company man, this was a good question. In fact it's pretty much THE question about UFC.
Is the UFC entertainment or sport? Is it closer to boxing or to WWE wrestling?
Aly was interviewing the bloke who's controlled the fledgling sport for 18 years -- during which period it has gone from niche concern to global phenomenon. He would have failed to do his job if he didn't ask that.
But the bit that got UFC fans mad really was when Aly pressed White on why Conor McGregor was not suspended.
A terse exchange ensued, in which White made the good point that since various authorities ranging from the Nevada Athletic Commission to the New York Attorney General have already stepped in -- and since McGregor was actually arrested -- he saw no need to act.
"They already took care of it, what am I going to do?" White asked.
Again, this robust verbal exchange proved altogether too combative for the big tough fight fans who love nothing better than seeing a man or woman pummelled senseless and cut to shreds. (And if you don't believe us, here's a video of the UFC's worst injuries. Warning: don't eat lunch while watching it.)
There's a whole lot of sport, a whole lot of brutality and a whole lot of showmanship in the UFC.
Project host Waleed Aly and the rest of the gang were trying to engage the UFC boss on this issue. Dana White handled himself all right. UFC fans not so much. In fact they showed they've pretty much got a glass jaw.