Dana White spoke to MMA Junkie just a little while ago regarding the UFC 133 replacement fighter saga. It seems that Lyoto Machida had initially accepted the fight, but changed the terms a little while later and asked for more money, which sent the whole thing spiraling out of control. This caused Tito Ortiz to reconsider. Here's Dana on Machida:
"Machida accepted the fight," White told MMAjunkie.com. "We knew for a couple days this was going down, and Machida accepted the fight. Then when we called back and said, 'OK, we're going to make this fight,' Machida's people came back and said, 'We'll tell you what. You pay us what you pay Anderson Silva, and we'll take the fight.' This was after they had already agreed to take the fight.
"I said, 'Are you [expletive] kidding me? I'll tell you what. You tell Machida he achieves what [expletive] Anderson Silva has achieved, then maybe he'll make Anderson Silva money. Have a nice day.'"
I guess it was purely about the money for Mr. Machida:
According to White, Machida's camp made it clear there was no fear or concern in the matchup. Instead, their strategy all came down to financial promises.
"They said, 'Machida will fly out there tomorrow if you pay him what you pay Anderson Silva,'" White said. "They said they do the deal, then I call back to make it and what's what they said."
After that, in stepped Tito. Again:
"Tito turned it down, and then Tito called back and said, 'Did you get the fight yet?'" White said. "I said, 'Nope.' He goes, 'Let me think about it. Let me talk to my team, and I'll call you back tomorrow.' This was Tuesday night."
Dana also stated that Ortiz won't have to worry about his job being on the line based on the outcome of UFC 133. IN fact, he could get majorly rewarded for a win:
"[Expletive] right, he gets a break," White said. "Tito stepped up to the plate. It's [expletive] weird here. It's like I'm dealing with a new person. I like it. I like the new Tito.
"The storyline is what's so interesting. Tito went from 'You're about to be cut,' to now, if he beats Rashad Evans, he's back in the mix. He's back in the picture."
Machida holds the UFC for more money. Tito Ortiz swoops in to save the day on short notice. Who would have predicted THAT storyline?