Dana White backs Jones over eye-poke controversy


After a few days to think on it, and amid some continued fan outcry, Dana White has stepped up to bat for Jon Jones and his open handed defense.

It's amazing how a little remove and an outpouring of fan dissent will change a man's tune. Immediately post UFC 172, Dana White was echoing the voice of the people when he told Ariel Helwani that "we've got to stop that stuff," in response to Helwani's questions about Jones' open hand strategy and the eye pokes resulting from it. He's not exactly going off message now, but in a recent conversation with MMA Junkie, White was much more firm in his support for the light heavyweight champion and his actions.

White was still beating the drum of the need for fighters to keep their hands closed, and the problems that traditional open handed guards present in causing eye pokes, but steered the conversation away from "guys who have reach."

"It's not just taller fighters," he said. "Jones has that range and he can do it, but lots of guys do it because that's how you block punches. So you keep your hands open and you slap punches down. Then guys are rushing in and you're doing whatever, and guys get poked in the eyes.

Eventually he was fairly hard line in his dismissal of Jones as a repeat offender in a broken system, making it clear that most criticism is coming from a needlessly vocal fanbase who "are always going to go overboard with Jon Jones because they don't like him."

"[Jones] poked him in the eye twice, and then the referee warned him about it, and he never did it again," White said. "They're making it sound like he was targeting his eyes and sticking his fingers in his eyes the entire fight and nobody did anything about it. He did it twice, he was warned, and he never did it again in a five-round fight."

It may run somewhat contrary to his previous sentiments on the topic, but it's actually refreshing to see White going to bat for the light heavyweight champion. White is correct in his feelings that Jones will always have an uphill battle with the core UFC fanbase, but a big part of winning that battle comes from the promotion not joining in the chorus to tear him down. If the UFC can still make eye pokes a priority without making it about Jon Jones, they would probably be better off for it.

view original article >>
Report here if this news is invalid.

Related News

  • 21 days ago
  • 9 views

CM Punk is a huge fan of MMA, has a major following from his days with WWE and has trained for years in Brazilian jiu-jitsu under the Gracies. So would UFC president Dana White hear what he has to sa read news >>

  • 10 days ago
  • 40 views

A minor controversy ensued when Claudia Gadelha appeared to strike Joanna Jedrzejczyk after the final horn sounded in their UFC on Fox 13 fight. UFC president Dana White weighed in on the topic. A ti read news >>

  • 24 days ago
  • 6 views

Are the long rumored UFC Uniforms about to be announced? During the start of the year, Dana White teased that they're developing official UFC Uniforms for fighters. While details were scarce back the read news >>

  • 23 days ago
  • 28 views

NEW YORK -- UFC president Dana White talks about the new UFC deal with Reebok, what it means for the fighters, why they did it now, as well as the new UFC headquarters in Las Vegas. read news >>

  • 23 days ago
  • 1 views

NEW YORK -- Frankie Edgar talks about his win over Cub Swanson two weeks ago, his pitch to Dana White to get the next title shot, and his thoughts on the new UFC-Reebok partnership. read news >>

  • 23 days ago
  • 3 views

UFC CEO Lorenzo Fertitta and president Dana White explained the ins and outs of the company's landmark deal with Reebok. read news >>

  • 23 days ago
  • 5 views

UFC President Dana White discuses the promotion’s new deal with Reebok and reveal that the new ZUFFA headquarters will have a rehab center for fighters. read news >>

  • 23 days ago
  • 32 views

UFC president Dana White talks about the new UFC deal with Reebok, what it means for the fighters, why they did it now, as well as the new UFC headquarters in Las Vegas. read news >>

  • 23 days ago
  • 6 views

Unless you've been living under a rock, you heard the recent blockbuster news (video) that Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) inked a landmark apparel outfitting deal with Reebok that will see the read news >>

Jump to: