PHILADELPHIA -- The gloves came off a couple of days early on Thursday when UFC President Dana White took aim at fellow promotion Strikeforce following the UFC 101 news conference.
Previously White had been respectful toward Strikeforce despite frequently criticizing other shows. This week, though, Strikeforce signed Fedor Emelianenko, the No. 1-ranked heavyweight in the world and one of the few elite fighters whom the UFC has failed to secure.
“They should have stayed the way they were,” White said of the move, apparently seeing the signing of Fedor as Strikeforce’s attempt to compete with the UFC.
Strikeforce CEO Scott Coker has downplayed a UFC-Strikeforce rivalry. Whether he wants to fight with the UFC or not, however, White is swinging. At one point White referred to the promotion as “Strikefarce.” The UFC president also said Thursday that Strikeforce signing Fedor was a major mistake.
“He’ll put them out of business,” White said. “They have no money. These guys have no money and they have no distribution. Four f---king people watch Showtime.”
White wouldn’t say specifically what a battle with Strikeforce could include, be it counter-programming or otherwise, but he issued several warnings.
“We’ll see what happens,” White said. “If they want to fight me, we’re gonna fight. We know how that goes, and we know how it ends.”
Strikeforce Responds to 'Strikefarce' Comment