UFC 133 Conference Call With Dana White On Rashad Evans Vs. Tito Ortiz

Live coverage of Dana White's UFC 133 pre-event conference call at 12:15 p.m. ET regarding the new headliner between Tito Ortiz and Rashad Evans.

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Dana White Talks Tito Ortiz, Lyoto Machida, Brock Lesnar, Chael Sonnen,

This is a summary of Dana White's conference call with media following the announcement that Rashad Evans vs. Tito Ortiz will now headline UFC 133 in lieu of Rashad Evans vs. Phil Davis.

Dana White opened with a summary of events leading to the change:

  • Phil Davis -- injured knee, found out last week
  •  Tito Ortiz -- was called first, was pre-occupied with personal issues, turned down the fight.
  • Lyoto Machida -- has been "terrorizing" Dana with calls asking for a fight, he accepted the fight.
  • Phil Davis -- We confirmed that he wouldn't be able to fight.
  • Machida -- asked for "Anderson Silva money", Dana said "when you accomplish what Anderson Silva has then you can get Anderson Silva money"
  • Tito called back asking if they'd found an opponent for Evans, he then accepted the fight. 

White then opened the call up for questions, full audio below:


 

Mike Fagan of Bloody Elbow took extensive notes:

Dana on Tito Ortiz:

-Tito did not ask for more money.
-(On Tito's payout at 132) We signed that deal awhile ago. We didn't go in and renegotiate (before 132).
-We didn't talk about being immune to being cut if Evans beats him. But he stepped up.
-If Tito beats Rashad, he's definitely- It would definitely put Tito IN THE MIX.
-The other thing about Tito, he's been a one-dimensional fighter his whole career because he could be.
-I respect Tito for stepping up and taking this fight. I like dealing with this Tito Ortiz.
-Tito has barely lost his last however many fights. No one's been beating up on Tito in the last 5-6 fights.
-People are drawn to Tito, whether it's to hate him or like him.
-Ortiz was never my 'ultimate kicking boy.' He would cause us problems, step over dollars to pick up dimes.
-Now he's turned it around. I wish I had this Tito Ortiz seven years ago.
-I think you're seeing this because he knows his window is going to close soon.
-I thought Tito was out. I didn't think he was an option for me. He called me.

Dana on Lyoto Machida:

-Before you make the call, you know what the call's going to be like. I did not expect that from Machida.
-Never do I expect a guy to accept a fight and then turn around and ask for 'Anderson Silva' money.
-Nah (it won't stay with me). People get crazy in this business sometimes.
-I haven't heard a word from Machida's camp.
-There's nothing wrong with asking for this or that for taking a fight on short notice. But to ask for 'Anderson Silva' money?
-It's a slap in the face to us and to Anderson Silva.

Dana on Rashad Evans:

-There's no doubt that Rashad's next in line (for the title). 
-We wanted to make sure Rashad fought.
-When I was bouncing around names, Rashad's answer was 'I don't care who you get. You don't need to approve it with me.'

Dana on Phil Davis:

-Davis couldn't kickbox for 2.5 weeks.
-Phil Davis will fight when he's 100%. He'll fight a top contender when he comes back.
-Phil Davis won't need surgery. Rehab and rest. He shouldn't be out long.
-It's a strain or a sprain. I don't know.

Miscellaneous:

-The reason Nogueira came out with the "god" thing is because I had a talk with him after his last fight too.
-Our next plan was Vladimir Matyushenko.
-Never crossed my mind to dip into the 205 class from Strikeforce. Who would I have gotten to fight Rashad?
-No matter the training, it's fighting that keeps you in shape. I like guys to fight 3 times a year.
-Both Chris Leben and Chael Sonnen texted me and said they wanted the fight.

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UFC 133 Conference Call With Dana White On Rashad Evans Vs. Tito Ortiz

SBN MMA will be providing live coverage of today's UFC 133 conference call with Dana White to discuss the new headliner for UFC 133: Rashad Evans vs. Tito Ortiz. Evans had been expected to face up-and-comer Phil Davis, but Davis had to drop out with an injury earlier this week. 

The bout will be a rematch of the 2008 draw between Evans and Ortiz at UFC 73. That bout was somewhat controversial as Ortiz was docked a point for fence grabbing, forcing the tie.

The rumors have been flying this week since UFC 133 headliner Davis pulled out of the fight. It's not easy replacing a top-of-the-card fighter with just four weeks notice. The UFC reached out to Tito Ortiz and Lyoto Machida and the negotiations became messily public.

At one point Dana White texted Kevin Iole that Machida was in, then he quickly retracted. Tito Ortiz was publicly refusing the fight up until late yesterday. White has since publicly ripped Machida and his camp for making "outrageous" salary demands before accepting the fight. 

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