Dana White takes aim at Bob Arum for being a bad promoter. This time bizarrely focusing on Arum booking Manny Pacquiao against Juan Manuel Marquez for a fourth time, insisting that Arum should have given Manny an easier fight that would have made far less money.
Dana White often brings up how he is a "boxing guy" who "comes from boxing" and "loves boxing" while often engaging in petty sniping about the problems he sees with boxing. Specifically, Dana likes to take boxing promoters to task for not always having the best fight the best or making fights no one wants to see.
He's done an abrupt 180 in the wake of Manny Pacquiao's knockout loss to Juan Manuel Marquez, calling Bob Arum the "dumbest promoter in the history of the world."
"Dumbest fight in history. Bob Arum is a moron. You don’t take that fight, you idiot. Why would you do that fight? It’s all about the money, that’s why. That was a money fight, that’s what that fight was done for. He should have fought Bradley. Bradley’s the fight they should have done. He would have knocked Bradley out, he would have got his belt back and now he’s back in the position he should have been in. [Pacquiao's] one of the best fighters in the world. He goes out and fights Marquez again? Bob Arum is the dumbest promoter in the history of the world."
There's actually not really many arguments against why the Pacquiao/Marquez IV fight should have been booked. Yes, they'd fought three previous times, but they were three previous fights with no definitive outcome. There was a legitimate argument that each man had won each of the previous three fights. Both men are long-time staples at the very top end of the "pound-for-pound" discussions and both men had major fanbases willing to pay to watch the bout.
The fight did $10.8 million at the gate, the 13th biggest in Nevada history. It also sold 1.15 million pay-per-view buys. So there's no arguing against interest in the fight. Adding that to the legitimate competitive "best vs. best" nature of the fight and it's a fight that's basically impossible to argue against.
But it's very obvious what he's saying: Manny Pacquiao should have been given a softer fight, even if it would have made less money. However, there was no demand for a Pacquiao-Bradley rematch, so that suggestion is odd, given that boxing fans didn't really want to see that fight, and White often talks about giving fight fans what they want to see. Pacquiao-Marquez for a fourth time wasn't the most exciting announcement and didn't have the biggest buzz, either, but it was definitely more welcome than a Bradley rematch.
So what is it? Does Dana White want to see all the best fights (there is no arguing that Pacquiao-Bradley II was or would have been a better fight than Pacquiao-Marquez IV), or if you even barely scratch the surface, is he just a promoter like all promoters? I think the answer is clear.
Basically, Dana's argument is so bizarre in that he's effectively arguing for making a worse fight that less people would have wanted to see to protect Pacquiao. Ultimately advocating for the safe fight that isn't in demand means Dana is advocating for exactly what he has spent a lot of time blasting the sport for in the past.
Meanwhile, we're heading into a year where three title fights feature guys coming off losses -- one of which is also coming off a lengthy suspension so has been inactive following the loss -- and there seems to be a shift away from the "best fighting the best" mentality that dominated the UFC's matchmaking and appeal in the past.