The real UFC battle (cont.)
Posted: Saturday July 7, 2007 3:42PM; Updated: Saturday July 7, 2007 3:55PM
While White refuses to discuss fighter salaries or how much his company makes, he says Ortiz is way off in his claims.
"That's not true at all. Tito Ortiz has no idea what other guys make," says White. "You don't hear other guys bitching about what they're making. Tito's a buffoon. This guy steps over a dollar to pick up a dime. This guy has left more money on the table in the last six years than any other person I've met in my life. I look at our fighters as our partners. Tito Ortiz is no partner to anybody. He's the most selfish human being I've ever met in my life. He's a moron. He's not a businessman. He's his own worst enemy. I've never met a guy who thinks he's so smart but is absolutely, completely retarded."
Ortiz, who prides himself on his business acumen and says he made more money last year off his clothing line, Punishment Athletics, than he did in the Octagon, laughs off White's comments as ignorance.
"When I go to bed at night, and I look in the mirror, I'm looking at myself. I've got to respect myself as a businessman, as a fighter, and as a person," he says. "If I don't do that and I let everyone take advantage of me ... I could never do that. I'll never let that happen. I'll step over a dollar to pick up a penny, just as long as that penny is an honest penny I've earned, instead of a dollar that I sold myself out for. I'll never do that. Ever."
Ortiz has one more fight left on his UFC contract after Saturday night and it remains to be seen if he will go back to the negotiating table with White or move on and attempt to find greener pastures elsewhere.
"I don't know if I can deal with Dana for another negotiation," says Ortiz. "I don't know if I want to negotiate with him again. I'm willing to move on. If you're not going to pay me the money that I think I'm worth, I'll go with someone else. I'll sign with another organization. I'm going to fight for another three or four years, maybe five if the money's awesome and if I can do something smart. If I sign with UFC, people are going to know I'm making a huge difference."
White appears to be content to watch Ortiz leave after his next fight as he doubts the former light heavyweight champion will ever compete for the title again.
"Tito Ortiz is a self-centered jackass," says White. "Tito really isn't that good. He's not. Tito's 33 now and there's a lot of good fighters out there. He's a lot of hype. He will never hold the light heavyweight championship again."