During the press conference that followed Dana White’s Contender Series last night, the UFC’s CEO gave an honest, and sarcastic, reaction when asked about Showtime getting out of the boxing business.
White has had a rough relationship with Stephen Espinoza, the president of Showtime Sports, since promoting alongside him in 2017 for Floyd Mayweather Jr. versus Conor McGregor. That ill will has clearly not faded, as White did not hold back on how he feels about Espinoza and the product he produces.
Dana White’s response was dripping with sarcasm when asked about Showtime potentially leaving the boxing business 😬 pic.twitter.com/WOihsaCuSE
— MMA Fighting (@MMAFighting) September 27, 2023
“That’s incredibly unfortunate, Production of that show is fantastic, the guy who runs Showtime boxing is a great human being. It’s unfortunate to hear this.
“F*** Espinoza, and it’s about time that s***** product is off the air.”
While the certain status of the organization, which includes Showtime Boxing and Bellator MMA, has not been fully disclosed to the public, the word on the street is not positive. Bellator MMA has been in talks with the PFL regarding a sale, but the latest rumors on that subject have been that the negotiations and not going positively, and the promotion may outright fold.
In addition to outright disliking Espinoza, White has had a spotted past with Showtime in general. This is in a large way due to the way that Strikeforce MMA was produced prior to the UFC’s acquisition of the organization, that was being run by current Bellator President Scott Coker.
The overall products of Showtime Sports seem to be a good thing for combat sports in the eyes of many, but White seems excited about the prospect of this opening up a gap in the market to be filled by bigger and better organizations.
“You never know, sounds good to me,” White said with a smirk in response to a reporter hinting at the UFC filling the aforementioned gap.