Leaked and deleted texts: UFC execs trash Scott Coker, Bellator, former fighters
Anton Tabuena goes over dozens of leaked (and deleted) texts from Dana White and other UFC executives that show them taking shots at Scott Coker, Bellator, and even their former fighters.
Various text messages and emails from UFC executives have been recently unsealed from the antitrust lawsuit against the promotion.
Among the trove of documents that John S. Nash and Bloody Elbow have obtained from the antitrust lawsuit were previously unreleased payouts for their biggest stars, along with dozens of text messages, emails and depositions.
Filings showed various dealings and discussions among the UFC brass where they celebrated "cut throat" and "nasty" moves they pulled off in negotiations, and trashed their stars such Jon Jones and Mark Hunt. This latest set of documents Bloody Elbow has sorted through involve UFC executives discussing "rival" promotions.
Dana White trashes "very bad promoter" Scott Coker
One of the text exchanges revealed from the antitrust lawsuit was about Bellator booking a matchup between former UFC champions Tito Ortiz and Quinton "Rampage" Jackson. Lorenzo Fertitta sent Dana White a message, saying "I thought they don't take UFC castoffs."
Dana White was then asked about this in his deposition. This is how the exchange went:
Question: Okay. What did you understand Mr. Fertitta to be saying there?
Dana White: That Bellator had come out and said, "We won't take UFC castoffs."
Question: All right. And -- but nevertheless, UFC viewed Mr. Ortiz and Mr. Jackson as essentially castoffs?
White: That's -- that's Scott Coker's MO. Scott Coker doesn't build anybody, right? He doesn't turn anybody into stars. He just takes old names and recycles them. He's a -- he -- he's a very, very bad promoter.
White: Very bad at what he does.
Question: All right. And that's a -- that's -- you're saying that -- I just want to understand you. Because Mr. Coker's been in several different promotions; right?
White: All failures.
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Dana White: Scott Coker is bad at promoting, Ronda Rousey only a star because of UFC
While Dana White was ranting about how bad a promoter Scott Coker is, the deposition then continued on to discuss former Strikeforce and UFC champion Ronda Rousey.
Question: Right. Is it your -- not withstanding the fact that the UFC got some -- I think as you testified earlier, some really great fighters from Mr. Coker's Strikeforce promotion; right?
White: That we turned into stars. When you have Ronda Rousey and you can't turn her into a star, you should probably go open a restaurant or something.
Question: And so -- and so is it your testimony that at Bellator, Mr. Coker is continuing to essentially recycle has-been fighters? Is that --
White: Well, no. He -- he recycles big names.
White: That's what he does. Rampage Jackson is a huge name. Tito Ortiz is a huge name. And -- and basically, he re-- you know, takes guys with big names and puts on fights with them instead of turning guys into stars, even when he has a roster packed with stars, and one of them include Ronda Rousey.
Question: Well, Ronda Rousey wasn't a star at the time that she was fighting under contract with Strikeforce; right?
White: Till I turned her into a star.
White: Just for the record, I turned her into a star immediately when she got to the UFC --
White: -- her first fight.
UFC lawsuit strategy? Dana White contradicts previous statements
Dana White had a lot of curious statements even in that short snippet from his deposition.