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Dana White says his anger targeted at Showtime, not Strikeforce


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When UFC president Dana White took aim at a budding rival earlier this month by calling them "Strike-farce," it appeared the UFC exec's long-standing praise of Strikeforce was coming to an end.


But at today's UFC 102 pre-fight press conference, White clarified who the real enemy was in the battle for MMA supremacy.


"I'm not anti-Strikeforce," White said. "I don't dislike those guys. I dislike Showtime. That's who I dislike."


The premium cable channel is Strikeforce's current broadcast partner, and the network previously carried the now-defunct EliteXC on its airwaves. White pulled no punches in describing his position on the channel.


"I think they're [expletives]," White said. "I don't like them. I don't like their attitude. They think they're better than they really are.


"They've been second-rate at boxing. They've been second-rate at programming, and now they think they're great at mixed martial arts. My fight is with them, not with Strikeforce."


White wouldn't reveal what Showtime executive had ruffled his feathers, but he said that individual was undoubtedly aware of the UFC exec's feelings.


"The guy over at Showtime who I'm talking about knows who he is, and I dislike him very much," White said. "My beef is with him, not really with Strikeforce."


As MMAjunkie.com previously reported, White said the UFC may add a third show to its November lineup ? a move that could potentially serve as strong counter-programming for Showtime's broadcast of the Strikeforce debut of Fedor Emelianenko.


The UFC president also hinted at a potential new broadcast partner for the new show, and though he declined to comment on who the new partner would be, White both promised to bury Showtime while simultaneously ruling out HBO as that potential network.


"[showtime] sucked at boxing," White said. "They got their **** kicked by HBO, always, at boxing, yet they tried to stay in it. They got their **** kicked by HBO in programming, but they're still around.


"They're going to get their **** kicked in mixed martial arts, too ? just not by HBO."


One new strategy being used by the UFC is the live airing of preliminary card contests on Spike TV. The organization has committed to showing two bouts prior to the "UFC 103: Franklin vs. Belfort" pay-per-view on Sept. 19 ? a night the UFC will go head-to-head with the Floyd Mayweather vs. Juan Manuel Marquez boxing pay-per-view.


White seemed to shy away from that strategy in regards to future events.


"One of my big things has always been when people talk about the prelims, my philosophy is: People who come to events, you've got to buy tickets, you've got to get a hotel room, you eat dinner out every [expletive] night," White said. "You spend a [expletive]-load of money to come see an event live.


"And what more do you get than the people who are all chipping in paying two bucks each to watch the pay per view at home and only have to go next door to their buddy's house? You get the [expletive] prelims and all the other feel ? the live show, you get to meet the fighters, you get to go to the weigh-ins. It's part of the live experience."


Despite the apparent one-and-done nature of the strategy, White did say he was happy to have a chance to give a little bit back to the UFC's hardcore fans.


"I like trying new things all the time, and one of the big things that I like to do is I like to give back to the fans all the time," White said. "Boxing, other mixed martial arts events, all these other people in the industry, nobody gives back more fights on free TV than we do. I'm a big advocate of that.


"When you have fans that keep buying the pay-per-views every month, you've go to give back. On this one, I'm going to try it."




"(Signing Fedor Emelianenko) will put (Strikeforce) out of business. These guys have no money and they have no distribution. Four (expletive) people watch Showtime. Their last fight they put on, do you know how many people watched that fight? 245,000 people watched that fight."


This was UFC president Dana White?s proclamation immediately after Strikeforce announced the signing of coveted heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko, ending a two-week sweepstakes that put the MMA world on the edge of its seat. White, it appeared, was zeroing in on Strikeforce.


And he is, but at a Thursday press conference for UFC 102 in Portland, the brash UFC exec said the San Jose, Calif., based promotion was not the focus.


?I?m not anti-Strikeforce; I don?t dislike those guys,? he said. ?I dislike Showtime. I don?t like their attitude. They think they?re better than they really are. They?ve been second rate at boxing, second rate at programming. Now they think they?re great at mixed martial arts, and my fight is with them, not with Strikeforce.?


Showtime was the first premium cable network to jump into the mixed martial arts arms race, though its original promotional partner, EliteXC, is now defunct. Strikeforce bridged the gap in February, re-establishing the premium cable channel?s MMA ties.


White said his beef with the pay-for-play channel had roots in his love of boxing and claimed the channel failed to promote combat sports.


?They got their **** kicked always by HBO at boxing, yet they tried to stay in it,? he said. ?They got their **** kicked with HBO in programming, and they?re still around. Their going to get their **** kicked in mixed martial arts too. Just not by HBO.?


Showtime Networks representative Chris DeBlasio declined comment on White?s remarks.


White said plans to add a third UFC event in November ? headlined by UFC lightweight champ defending against Diego Sanchez ?? are afoot. The event isn?t intended for the usual pay-per-view or Spike TV outlets, however, leading to the belief that there is a new TV partner on the horizon.

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Showtime has the best new shows and is making STRIKEFORCE bigger no wonder he h8s it....Not only that they dont charge $50 plus for 90 percent of there events!It is like 8 bux a month for the best channel on direct tv and you get your money's worth period.From DEXTER to WEEDS to MMA showtime is becoming bigger and better than even HBO move over bacon now theres something meaty"er And they got FEDOR lol Rogers lol LE i would be mad to if that was happening a non greedy MMA outlet better lynch them quik before they ruin REVENUE

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