UFC boss Dana White: I try to like Roy Nelson, but he's delusional


roy-nelson-31.jpgHOUSTON – Dana White and heavyweight Roy Nelson don’t always see eye to eye, but the UFC president insists he always tries to give “Big Country” a fair shake. That said, White said he can’t believe what came out of Nelson’s mouth after his UFC 166 loss to Daniel Cormier.

“Contrary to popular belief, I try so hard to like Roy Nelson,” White said to a small group of reporters following Saturday night’s post-UFC 166 press conference. “It’s like I saw him backstage before I came out to talk to you guys. I was like, ‘What’s up Roy? You looked good. You lost weight,’ and this and that. Then I come out and hear the stupid s–t he said to you guys right before I walk out there.”

Cormier (13-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) and Nelson (19-9 MMA, 6-5 UFC) met in the co-feature of Saturday’s “UFC 166: Velasquez vs. dos Santos III” event in Houston’s Toyota Center. The contest wound up being fairly one-sided, as a FightMetric report gave Cormier an edge of 74-17 in significant strikes, as well giving him credit for three successful takedowns, while Nelson didn’t have any.

All three judges awarded Cormier the bout, 30-27.

After the loss, Nelson said he wasn’t all that impressed with his opponent’s performance.

“He didn’t engage me really,” Nelson said. “That’s not to take anything away from Cormier, but it’s tough to fight like that. He’s a great fighter, but it’s frustrating.”

White was shocked at the evaluation.

“He said Cormier wasn’t engaging enough,” White said. “He outwrestled him, and he punched the living s–t out of him. How much more does he want to be engaged? He says some dumb s–t, and he’s very delusional.

“He says we’ve never given him a title shot when we should have given him a title shot. Every time you get that close to a title shot, you get beat by the best in the world. That’s why you’ve never had a title shot.”

The loss was Nelson’s second consecutive defeat, and he’s looked relatively flat in both affairs. It’s a disappointing result from Nelson, who admitted his training camp had been extremely difficult but raised a few eyebrows with a slimmed-down physique. Still, after a 4-1 stretch had some fans wondering if “Big Country” could possibly earn a shot at UFC gold, the back-to-back losses have left him a difficult spot.

White contends he still has respect for the heavy hitter but admits he’s not Nelson’s biggest fan at the moment.

“The guy says the dumbest s–t I’ve ever heard in my life, and he’s very delusional,” White said. “That being said, I think he’s an incredibly tough guy. With his physique an everything, I’m blown away how he can compete at this level and how talented he is and what a great chin he has. But very time he gets above No. 5, he looks like he doesn’t belong in the top-10, you know what I mean?

“You get him above No. 5, and he doesn’t look like he belongs in the top-10. You get him in there with some guys that aren’t, and he looks like a world-beater, and everybody starts yelling, ‘He should get a title shot.’ And then you see him fight guys who are athletic and talented, and he looks like he doesn’t belong in the top-10.”

For complete coverage of UFC 166, check out the UFC Events section of the site.

(Pictured: Roy Nelson)

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