UFC president Dana White is known for rarely reprimanding his fighters for their pre-, during-, or post-fight comments. This leniency extends to the recent exchange of verbal blows between middleweight champion Israel Adesanya and Dricus Du Plessis on Saturday night.
After Du Plessis secured an upset victory over Robert Whittaker, cementing his position as the top contender in the division, Adesanya used a number of racial slurs while addressing his future opponent. White, however, remained unfazed and had no intention of censoring Adesanya’s comments made inside the octagon.
“Who cares?” White remarked during the post-fight press conference for UFC 290. “I couldn’t care less. This is the fight business. Israel Adesanya can say whatever he wants. Who gives a shit? Are people complaining about that? Of course they are. Too bad.”
While opinions may vary regarding what should or shouldn’t be acceptable in fighter trash talk, UFC welterweight Matt Brown echoes White’s stance on how such matters should be handled.
“I actually agreed with Dana the other day, despite all the shit he received when he said, ‘This is the fucking fight game, people say stupid shit,'” Brown shared on the latest episode of The Fighter vs. The Writer. “Just think about all the stupid shit Dana has had to listen to and endure over the past 20 years or so in the UFC. I tend to agree with him.”
Brown also recognizes that many UFC athletes are prone to making controversial statements, particularly on social media. While he doesn’t defend the content of what’s being said, he acknowledges that it’s unrealistic to expect White to intervene each time a fighter says something that someone out there disagrees with.
“Regarding Dana specifically, what the fuck is he supposed to do?” Brown questioned. “If he tried to take action every time a fighter acted out or said something the media doesn’t like or the mainstream has an issue with, he wouldn’t have time for anything else in his life. He wouldn’t get anything else done.”
“That’s why I believe Dana is like that. He’s thinking, ‘You guys are talking about it. All PR is good PR. You guys are fucking talking about it. Let’s fucking go, keep saying stupid shit. You’re not hurting anyone.'”
As for Du Plessis, he openly criticized Adesanya following their confrontation, labeling him a “clown” for his behavior, which he deemed unbecoming of a UFC champion.
Regardless of the in-cage altercation and Adesanya’s subsequent remarks, Brown had nothing but praise for Du Plessis’ performance, particularly his devastating second-round knockout of Whittaker.
With this victory, Du Plessis became only the second middleweight fighter to defeat Whittaker in the UFC, with Adesanya being the other. He solidified his status as the leading contender in the 185-pound division.
“This guy just shows up. He gets the job done,” Brown admired of Du Plessis. “He may not look great doing it. He may lack the technique of some of these other guys, but he fucking finds a way. You’ve got to have respect for that. I’m sure Izzy has a whole new level of respect for him after what he did to Whittaker. But where the hell did this guy come from? How did he manage to do that?”
“Because you watch him, you can study and analyze him all you want, and you won’t choose him. The more you watch, the less likely you are to pick him. But he steps up and fucking gets it done.”
Despite Du Plessis’ victory, he will undoubtedly be considered the underdog in a future bout against Adesanya. However, that doesn’t mean he can’t pull off another seemingly miraculous upset.
Brown refrains from stating that Du Plessis will emerge victorious against Adesanya, but he emphasizes that no one should underestimate him, especially after witnessing his triumph over Whittaker at UFC 290.
“That’s just the nature of this sport—there’s always that next guy who possesses something you can’t even pinpoint,” Brown reflected. “We try to analyze and create statistics for every aspect of this game, and then there’s a guy like Dricus. You won’t look at him and say he has the best jab, or the best wrestling, or the highest volume, or the most power. There’s no one standout quality that you need to watch out for. I’m not sure how you game plan against him. You just have to go in there and be better, I suppose, and to be fair, that’s Izzy’s game.”
“None of us picked [Dricus] to beat Whittaker. And I doubt any of us will pick him to beat Izzy, but I’m not betting my house on it anymore. I won’t touch that bet.”
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about fighter comments
What is the controversy surrounding Israel Adesanya’s comments?
Israel Adesanya, the middleweight champion, made racial slurs directed towards Dricus Du Plessis after Du Plessis’ upset win over Robert Whittaker. While some found Adesanya’s comments offensive, UFC president Dana White chose not to intervene, stating that fighters often say provocative things in the fight game.
Why does Matt Brown support Dana White’s approach?
Matt Brown, a UFC welterweight, agrees with Dana White’s stance on controversial fighter comments. Brown believes that in the fight game, people often say things that may be considered stupid or offensive. He argues that Dana White cannot be expected to police every statement and that fighters should be responsible for their own words.
How does Matt Brown view Dricus Du Plessis’ performance?
Matt Brown praises Dricus Du Plessis for his impressive performance against Robert Whittaker, securing a second-round knockout. Brown admires Du Plessis’ ability to find a way to win despite lacking some technical aspects. He recognizes Du Plessis as a formidable opponent, even though he might be seen as an underdog against Israel Adesanya.
Will Dricus Du Plessis be able to defeat Israel Adesanya?
While Matt Brown acknowledges that Dricus Du Plessis is likely to be considered an underdog in a future fight against Israel Adesanya, he doesn’t dismiss the possibility of another upset. Brown notes that Du Plessis possesses intangible qualities that make him unpredictable and difficult to game plan against. However, he does not outright predict Du Plessis’ victory and highlights the challenging nature of the matchup.
More about fighter comments
- “Israel Adesanya Apologizes for Racial Slurs After UFC 290 Victory” (source)
- “Dana White on Controversial Fighter Comments: ‘This is the Fight Business'” (source)
- “Matt Brown Supports Dana White’s Approach to Fighter Comments” (source)
- “Dricus Du Plessis Scores Upset Knockout Win over Robert Whittaker” (source)