When climbing your way to the top, you're bound to make a few enemies along the way.
Usually though, you hope to be on the right side of a conflict. After all, everyone is the hero of their own story and I'm sure the UFC and Dana White see it that way. To be perfectly honest, the UFC is in the right on a lot of these entries. Pea-brained politicians keeping Mixed Martial Arts from legalization? We got them here. Old, out of touch and straight up delusional boxing promoters who are a skid mark on the human race? Check.
But then there are some names where the UFC are unequivocally acting like the massive corporate juggernaut they are squashing the little guy for what I view as pretty minor or unjustified reasons. Many of those beefs have dragged on for far too long and it's long overdue for the UFC and/or Dana to give up the grudge.
Finally we have the ones that just kind of make me scratch my head as to why the UFC even bothers to care about. Many of these could and probably should just be ignored and be moved on from.
Before anyone points out that many of these enemies are actually just enemies of Dana White, I understand that but you have to realize that as the face of the UFC, whoever Dana White views as an enemy is going to be an enemy of the company by extension. There's no way of getting around it, so there.
You've been patient enough reader, so here at the top 15 enemies of the UFC (and Dana White).
Click the button below to start this article in quick view
15 James Toney
At one point in time, it seemed that James Toney was the biggest name in boxing to rag on the UFC at any chance he could. The former heavyweight boxing champ would take any interview he could just so he could call out Dana White and UFC heavyweights.
This public feud culminated in a "Boxing vs MMA" match at UFC 118 which pitted Toney vs UFC Hall of Famer Randy Couture where Toney was utterly crushed by the two division MMA champion. With the paycheck he got from the fight though, I would say "Lights Out" had the last laugh and it seems that Toney and the UFC have made up by now.
14 Thiago Silva
There's a really stupid saying squawked by some that "Any press is good press". I challenge any defender of the phrase to show me how this could be cut to be a good thing.
(I'm keeping this brief as the story is much lengthier than I have time for)
In 2014, the UFC was hit with a PR nightmare as their fighter Thiago Silva was accused of domestic assault by his then wife Thaysa Kamiji. A Feb.4 dispute with his wife and trainer Pablo Popovitch led to a four hour stand off with a SWAT team outside his home. The storm of negative press to the UFC made the company look bad and the promotion released Silva. Although the company hired him back for a brief period, they released him again in short order. Good riddance.
To be honest though, the UFC's bungling of the situation was a big part of the bad press.
13 The WWE
Both companies can tell the public until they're blue in the face that they're not in competition with each other, but they can't fool us.
The WWE and UFC's history together goes back all the way to 2005 with the UFC's inaugural Ultimate Fighter reality show, as the WWE didn't see UFC as a threat and was fine with Spike TV putting TUF after RAW. This helped the UFC immensely and contributed to their success.
Before WWE launched their network, the UFC's PPV buy rates routinely crushed the WWE's events. While Vince McMahon and Triple H maintain there is no competition between the two, WWE Hall of Famer Jim Ross has said otherwise.
Alright alright I'm cheating with this one but come on now, what other thing has cost the UFC more money than this?
In 2012, over 100 fights had to be changed due to injuries including GSP/Condit at UFC 143, Carwin/Nelson at TUF 16 and Henderson/Jones at UFC 151: The Phantom Event. UFC 197 was robbed of Jon Jones/Daniel Cormier II because of D.C's injury just this past weekend and surely more will come as the year rolls on.
No solution seems to be in sight for this one, so we can only knock on wood with crossed fingers that 2016 doesn't become 2012.
11 Loretta Hunt
Of all the Dana White rants, this one may be the most infamous.
In 2009, Loretta Hunt was a writer at Sherdog.com and wrote an article saying that managers and agents were having their backstage passes being revoked by the UFC as a way to depower and control their fighters.
Dana White didn't like the article in the least bit, and made sure everyone knew it. In a video blog of his, he called the story complete bulls*** and ripped Hunt and her sources (the video has now been taken down). In the video, White dropped over 40 f-bombs and threw out just about every insult one can.
As far as this relationship goes, I don't see Dana apologizing any time soon as Loretta Hunt still cannot get media credentials from the UFC.
10 Josh Gross
This name might not be familiar to many readers, but that actually is kind of the point.
Josh Gross is a MMA journalist whose problems with the UFC stretch all the way back to 2006 when he spoiled the results of The Ultimate Fighter's fourth season before the show was aired. That isn't the sole reason for the UFC's problem with Gross (there are rumors abound for that) but the bottom line is that Gross doesn't receive media credentials for UFC events despite being one of the best reporters in the game.
Most recently, Gross broke the story of Vitor Belfort's sketchy drug test around UFC 152 at Deadspin. Somehow though, I don't think Gross cares about being an enemy of the UFC brass.
9 Frank Shamrock
When you pit two big personalities like Frank Shamrock and Dana White against each other, you're bound to head into some heated arguments.
The beef between the two men started when Zuffa purchased the UFC in 2001. The two had differing opinions on how to grow the company and when they couldn't reach a deal for Shamrock to fight, a feud was born. This has led to Shamrock mostly being ignored from UFC history and both men taking shots at each other whenever they can.
The feud (in public anyway) seems to have died down now, as both men seem to have bigger fish to fry.
8 Jon Fitch
Who knew that a soft spoken guy like Jon Fitch could cause so many headaches for the UFC?
People might know of Fitch's problems with the UFC because of the lawsuit that Fitch and other former UFC fighters are involved in now, but he had problems with the promotion before that.
Aside from Dana White's general negative attitude over Fitch's conservative fighting style, Fitch and other fighters from American Kickboxing Academy were fired over refusing to sign their likenesses away for the UFC Undisputed 2009 video game. Fitch and those fighters were then fired and rehired in less than a day after the dispute was settled.
After filing a lawsuit against the company though, I don't see a Jon Fitch UFC comeback any time soon.
P.S. This entry also includes any other fighter included in said lawsuit, just FYI.
7 Randy Couture
Okay so a lot of the beef between Randy Couture and the UFC makes sense and some of it doesn't.
Way back in 2000, Couture left because the company claimed they couldn't pay him what was on his contract but it didn't end there. Couture would return to the company but once again found himself at odds in 2007 after he left and went to court with UFC.
Then came the big one; in 2013 Couture left his analyst position for UFC On Fox and signed with Bellator. This move prompted a scathing tongue lashing from White where he promised that Couture would never step foot in a UFC event ever again.
6 Tito Ortiz
Dana White may hate a lot of people on this list, but how many people was Dana actually willing to fight? Only one; Tito Ortiz.
White's feud with Ortiz stretches back to around 2003 when White tried to book Ortiz vs. Chuck Liddell for the Light Heavyweight Title but Ortiz refused (the reason why depends on who you ask). This feud reached its boiling point when Ortiz had it written in his contract that he would fight Dana in a boxing match.
While the boxing match didn't come to pass, the relationship shifted through the years from civil to bad until Ortiz signed with Bellator in 2013, where he then compared the UFC to "slavery". Safe to say that we won't see Ortiz in the UFC for a very long time.
5 Steve Mazzagatti
Hey now here's one that everybody from promoters to fans can get behind; nobody likes Nevada State Athletic Commission referee Steve Mazzagatti.
Known as that ref who makes fouls appear out of thin air and stops fights with the flip of a coin, Mazzagatti has been the target of Dana White's rage numerous times.
Notable Mazzagatti gaffes include the Josh Burkman vs. Jon Fitch one at WSOF 3 and Brock Lesnar vs. Frank Mir at UFC 81 but it really is a multiple choice question on the worst Mazzagatti calls ever. One must really wonder how he still has a job refereeing fights.
4 Bob Arum
Is there anybody that MMA fans want to punch more than this old tool?
Top Rank CEO and Manny Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum has taken two major swipes at MMA and they were both unfathomably stupid. The first came when in an interview with Ariel Helwani he called MMA fighters "homosexuals" and MMA fans "a bunch of skinheads".
The second big one came this year when he called MMA fans Donald Trump supporters. Like Mazzagatti, every person related to MMA in any way including the UFC hates Bob Arum.
3 New York Senate
Up until this year the state of New York was the only state in the U.S. to not have legalized Mixed Martial Arts. Seriously.
This absence of logic has to do with the state's senate. This dim-witted crew has compared MMA to slavery (seriously) and gay porn (still serious) and has blocked the legalization of this fine sport for years because of corruption and sheer ineptitude. I implore you to watch videos of the hearing for the legalization in New York. It shows just who is holding back the human race from further intelligence.
All one could do now is thank Odin that this matter has been laid to rest and we can finally enjoy a UFC event in Madison Square Garden.
2 Vadim Finkelchtein
When Dana White dubs you "Vadummy", you know things just got real.
For those who don't know, Vadim Finkelchtein is the owner of M-1 Global (a MMA promotion in Russia) and manager of the greatest heavyweight of all time Fedor Emelianenko.
When PRIDE FC folded in 2007, it seemed that the UFC would finally sign "The Last Emperor" and give the dream match of UFC Champion Randy Couture vs. PRIDE Champion Fedor Emelianenko. Problems arose though when Finkelchtein wanted to co-promote any card with Fedor on it as a UFC/M-1 Global production. UFC balked at the offer and that was ultimately what kept Fedor out of the UFC.
For all the money that Finkelchtein cost the UFC, the M-1 Global promoter will always be an enemy of the UFC.
1 John McCain
How many of the people on the list could say that they successfully got the UFC off of PPV? That's right, only former U.S presidential candidate John McCain.
When the UFC was still fighting for its legitimacy in the late 1990s, John McCain led a charge to ban the UFC in all fifty states by sending letters to their governors to ban it. While not all of them did, McCain's campaign and comparison of MMA to "human cockfighting" did enough harm to the company that they were forced off PPV airwaves.
Once regulations were put in place and the sport worked with athletic commissions to form rules though, McCain relented and nowadays is actually a fan of the sport. McCain's pressure was ultimately for the best though, as MMA is now accepted as a sport by the mass public.
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