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Dana White: ‘[Dan Henderson] doesn’t bring anything to the table’

Earlier today, the news was announced that Dan Henderson former Pride middleweight and light heavyweight champion had signed with Strikeforce.

Henderson who had competed in the UFC and was considered by many to be among the top title contenders for the organization’s middleweight title. Henderson’s future with the UFC came into question in late October, and as November progressed it became increasingly clear that negotiations with Zuffa had come to an end.

It had been foreshadowed by the UFC President that Henderson’s future would likely be with the San Jose based Strikeforce.
Earlier today, AOL Fanhouse had a chance to speak with White to get his response to the Strikeforce signing.

“He’s happy, but the reality is that I pushed him into signing that deal. I told people over the weekend that he’d sign within the next week. I wanted him to s**t or get off the pot. He was in this limbo forever, and he needed more motivation to make a decision. Do you think that there’s any guy we can’t get that I want? Other than Fedor [Emelianenko]? So far, he’s been the one guy we can’t get. But everyone else that we’ve wanted, we got. If I wanted Dan Henderson, I could’ve signed him. For the money he wanted, he’s not worth it. He’s not a big pay-per-view star, he’s not a big attraction, and he’s not going to sell out arenas. He wants way too much and he doesn’t bring anything to the table. Here’s the reality: If I wanted him, he’d be in the UFC. It’s not like, ‘F***, Strikeforce beat me out.’ He’s been a free agent for a long time. If I wanted him, I would have signed him by now.”-Dana White

Rumors are being reported that Henderson should make his Strikeforce debut in the second quarter of 2010 when he is expected to face either Strikeforece middleweight champion Jake Shields or lightweight kingpin Gegard Mousasi.

46 COMMENTS
  • Jak says:

    While i know other websites post crap. I always like it when 5oz. keeps above it. That’s why i’ve come here for a long time. This just seems like you are feeding the anti-ufc masses.

    Fuelling the online fire just seems lame.

    Hendo got signed, why not just focus on that. It should be a good day to hype MMA, not try to knock down other organizations.

  • king mah mah says:

    That’s pretty disrepectful for Dana to say that Dan “doesn’t bring anything to the table”. Wow.

  • Dufresne says:

    I don’t know exactly what to think about this. I don’t doubt that the UFC has the money and could have signed Hendo if they had really wanted to, but does Dana have to come out and say it like that?

    He seems kinda like that kid that didn’t get something they sorta wanted for Christmas but the guy across the street did “I didn’t want that bb gun anyways…”

  • king mah mah says:

    He’ll bring plenty to Strikeforce’s table. And I’ll be watching.

  • redness says:

    I love Dan but I think Dana is on point in reguards to his salary demands. He really isnt a big PPV draw and he lost once to Silva already. But for SF it is a good signing being on CBS and Show time. He cant make chuck money thats all there is to it.

  • Nick Havok says:

    Fuuuuuck Dana White!

    This is exactly why I hate him.

    He is always running his mouth, talking trash about the fighters. I absolutely hate the man.

    I respect guys like Dan Henderson a million times more. He is who I pay to see, not a leech like , Dana…but the fighters. The ones who sacrifice their health for our entertainment. The ones who spill their blood in the Octogon.

    It drives me crazy to see Dana throw them under the bus when he doesn’t get his way.

    And you are wrong Dana White, I would pay to buy a ticket to see Dan Henderson fight in Strikeforce. After all, he just knocked your boy Bisping right the fuck on out!

  • cocoonofhorror says:

    D’anus was born in a barn. stop expecting him to act with respect towards other people, and you wont be disappointed.

  • bbond30 says:

    Statements like that from Dana White are the reasons fighters and fans hate him! All he had to say was that the UFC couldn’t come to an agreement with Henderson. Every time the UFC lets a fighter go he has nasty remarks following the exit. Maybe that’s part of the reason Fedor doesn’t want to fight for the UFC?

  • redness says:

    You ever think that Dana and the UFC wants SF to make these big signings just so they will go the way of EXC and Pride. Makes sense to me. At the end there will be only one.

  • David Andrest says:

    Jak: While i know other websites post crap. I always like it when 5oz. keeps above it. That’s why i’ve come here for a long time. This just seems like you are feeding the anti-ufc masses.Fuelling the online fire just seems lame.Hendo got signed, why not just focus on that. It should be a good day to hype MMA, not try to knock down other organizations.

    Jak, the Dan signing is pretty big news. The response of his former employer is also news. I quoted the report. In regards to it being Anti-UFC that is your spin, I placed none of my opinion into this.

    If you get an anti UFC vibe, it is not my doing.

  • Makington says:

    Dana does come off immature everytime things don’t go his way, and he has to rant about how much he didn’t want them anyways.

    Dana – “Dan, you’re a great, world class fighter who’s one of our biggest stars, will you sign with the UFC again?”

    Hendo – “Well Dana I’m going to browse the market and see if any other company is willing to pay what I feel I’m worth.”

    Dana – “In that case, Clinch Gear is banned you dirty bastard…….nothing personal.”

    Hendo – “I think I’ll go with Strikeforce actually, they suit my needs better. It was nice working with you guys, good luck”

    Dana – “Well we didn’t want you anyways! You’re a sucky fighter and an even suckier person!” *tear*

    Would it kill Dana to wish Hendo luck with his new career instead of completely throwing him under the bus and trashing him? You wouldn’t know Dana is 40 how he acts a lot of the times.

  • redness says:

    Besides Bisbing what has Henderson done in the UFC lost to Rampage lost to Silva won a split with Franklin that could have gone eithier way and beat that brazilin kid in a snooze fest. No way that = big money.

  • jding3 says:

    “He’s not a big pay-per-view star, he’s not a big attraction, and he’s not going to sell out arenas. He wants way too much and he doesn’t bring anything to the table.”

    -I can’t believe he said that. In 2009, Dana used Hendo to headline UFC 93, and selling out the arena in the process, and he was used a pay per view draw. Then he had Hendo coach on the ultimate fighter, and then he got one of the knockouts of the year on the UFC’s biggest card ever. I’m not saying losing Hendo is going to ruin the UFC, that’s definitely not the case. It just is annoying that Dana always has to be so bitter and he can’t be happy for Hendo and wish him luck

  • nate says:

    dana’s a promoter. its his job to try and make every other promotions and fighters sound lower than his…

  • Jak says:

    jding3: Dana used Hendo to headline UFC 93, and selling out the arena in the process, and he was used a pay per view draw.

    That card only did 320k ppv. That’s not that great. It was also in the UK where UFC events will sell out regardless of who is fighting.

    Hendo did get a great Ko at 100, but he was hardly the draw. Gsp and Lesnar took care of that.

    I will agree that he should just wish him luck instead of opening his mouth with the crap he spews.

  • Unabomberman says:

    Dana seems like the usual Dana. No biggie.

    I hope for Hendo to put forth good performances and hopefully raise Strikeforce’s profile along with them, but we’ll see (fingers crossed).

  • elsicilian says:

    jding3: I can’t believe he said that. In 2009, Dana used Hendo to headline UFC 93, and selling out the arena in the process, and he was used a pay per view draw.

    I would imagine Rich Franklin was the bigger draw in that matchup, and UFC93 was staged in Dublin (Ireland, not Ohio) … UFC always puts together unspectacular lineups for the international shows, so headlining one of those is a dubious distinction at best.

    Dana White is often obnoxious, and this press release sounds true to form; however, Henderson is a frequently boring fighter, without a broad fan-base. As a dual-division Pride champion, I am sure he considers himself among the highest echelon of MMA fighters, and wants to be paid as such. I am equally certain that it makes little financial sense for the UFC to indulge him in that desire. This is pretty much the outcome I expected, and parting cheap-shots from Dana White should surprise nobody, either.

  • David Andrest says:

    nate: dana’s a promoter. its his job to try and make every other promotions and fighters sound lower than his…

    Ding ! Ding! Ding!

  • ndizzle says:

    this how they treat their fighters,the winner of bisbing vs hendo would get the shot at the title but really it was if bisping won he would get the shot,cuz he is tuf and a brit he can use in u.k to get mega draw.dana is so upset that hendo mest that up for them.so hendo was jus being used cuz if bisping won they would of promoted the shit that he beat the former dual-division pride champ.

    at the end of the day we dont know who wanted what.

    he is a big draw to sf,remember he was on that show tuf,so he has those followers that pay attention to the show.then haters will watch cuz haters can only hate if they watch.

  • sides666 says:

    i have to say that i understand why alot of you guys are offended by this latest comment but i have to agree with dana i could understand keeping him around if he were ten years younger but the truth is he maybe has three competitive fights left in him so why keep him for a lot of money he is not worth just to watch silva lay another beating on him? not worth it do not get me wrong i like dan he is an entertaining fighter to watch but the bottom line for him is pretty simple if i stay in the ufc i will only ever be considered a contender but if i go to strikeforce i can be a champion not only in one division but perhaps two easy choice. good luck dan i wish you the best but its time to run to strikeforce where its safe just like fagdor did

  • Vogairian says:

    I’m sure this will get all sorts of negatives, but Dana’s right for the most part. Dan is only relevant at this point because the UFC got him there. Hendo came over and got beat twice in a row in title fights. He got an easy fight and had a super close fight with Rich Franklin and then was built up into a huge match with Bisping. He’s relevance in the current MMA climate is manufactured by the UFC. He got mad that the UFC understood this and wasn’t willing to overpay so he took his ball and went somewhere else, that’s fine, but don’t act like he’s some saint in all of this. Let’s not forget this is the same guy who was vilified for dropping a bomb on an unconscious man and bragging about it.

  • king mah mah says:

    @ elsicilian- You said Henderson is “frequently a boring fighter”.

    Since when? The fight against Rampage was awesome. Same with the Franklin fight. We all know there is nothing boring about knocking Bisping out. So i’m confused at your statement. When did you start thinking he was boring on a regular basis?

  • Nick Havok says:

    king mah mah: @ elsicilian- You said Henderson is “frequently a boring fighter”. Since when? The fight against Rampage was awesome. Same with the Franklin fight. We all know there is nothing boring about knocking Bisping out. So i’m confused at your statement. When did you start thinking he was boring on a regular basis?

    I’m not speaking for elsicilian, rather for myself when I say…prior to the Bisping fight, Henderson was playing the role of ‘Decision Dan’ quite well.

    It think he had about 150,000 different reasons to play it that way too.

    Because ever since his devastating thrashing of Wanderlei Silva, Dan became more interested in simply winning than finishing fights or going for the kill.

    He even admitted as much in an interview after his fight with Anderson Silva where he balatantly admitted only trying to control Anderson to win rounds on the judges scorecards…Not go for the finish.

    Then agianst Palhares he played it very conservatively, and never fully engaged Rousmir. Yeah, I know he not suppose to jump into his guard, but Dan was striking and then getting the eff on out of there.

    Which got him the win…and an extra $150,000.

    Then against Franklin, Dan controlled the first two rounds, and then backed off the entire third as play it safe and protect his precious win (and extra $150,000!!!!!).

    Did I mention I hate win bonuses?

    Anywho, I was angry at Dan for morphing into ‘Decision Dan’ before my very eyes. I hated seeing him never fully engage, and never go for the finish. Being a Dan Henderson fan it was very aggrivating. I mean I was like the only guy in a house full of dudes who was rooting for him against Wanderlei in Pride.

    He has only recently redeemed himself with pounding he put on Michael Bisping.

    He finally went for the kill again.

  • king mah mah says:

    Watch the Palhares fight again, you might change your mind on that.

  • H3ro says:

    I simply have to agree with Dana White because I stated the same thing about Hendo when it was first announced that Hendo wanted lots of money. Dana hits the point: “He will not sell out any arenas, he is not that exciting to watch, and the biggest reason is that he is NOT a PPV star. Have Hendo headline a PPV and you’ll get lucky to sell over 100k. UFC made Hendo and now he will be another past his prime fighter like Mark Coleman and Randy Couture.

  • ndizzle says:

    H3ro: I simply have to agree with Dana White because I stated the same thing about Hendo when it was first announced that Hendo wanted lots of money. Dana hits the point: “He will not sell out any arenas, he is not that exciting to watch, and the biggest reason is that he is NOT a PPV star. Have Hendo headline a PPV and you’ll get lucky to sell over 100k. UFC made Hendo and now he will be another past his prime fighter like Mark Coleman and Randy Couture.

    hi being an olympic wrestler,and pride champ made him what he is.
    you guys cant be that weak minded

  • Why do you guys think Dana hasn’t release Stephan Bonner. That pretty much sums up Dana White.

    I agree with Dana on THIS one. I never ever never thought Dan Henderson was a fun to watchTechnical MMA kind of guy. He’s not a well rounded current day MMA fighter. I want more Anderson Silvas and Nate The Greats and Jose Aldos and BJ Penns and GSP’s. Polished boxing and Black Belts in Jiu Jistu with good wrestling. Way to stand your ground Dana!!!

    With all that said. I don’t always agree with Dana guys.. but on this I do.

  • ndizzle says:

    remember henderson maybe didnt ask for x amount of money.

    One is the compensation, but another was keeping his name and likeness rights, having access to intellectual property rights.

    rights that should be his,but in the ufc they own you so you dont get those rights.
    this probably another reason he went to sf,

    just a thought

  • Unabomberman says:

    FightFan313: Why do you guys think Dana hasn’t release Stephan Bonner.That pretty much sums up Dana White.I agree with Dana on THIS one.I never ever never thought Dan Henderson was a fun to watchTechnical MMA kind of guy. He’s not a well rounded current day MMA fighter. I want more Anderson Silvas and Nate The Greats and Jose Aldos and BJ Penns and GSP’s.Polished boxing and Black Belts in Jiu Jistu with good wrestling.Way to stand your ground Dana!!!With all that said.I don’t always agree with Dana guys.. but on this I do.

    Nothing wrong with Dana getting rid of Dan because of not seeing eye to eye on money issues. The *problem* ought to come when Dana begins saying that he practically drove Dan away on purpose by lowering the initial offer because he has NOTHING to offer. I mean, c’m on man. That’s being petty–slighted schoolgirl petty. The guy just knocked out your british poster boy Michael Bisping and he’s got NOTHING to offer? Isn’t the UFC in the business of making the best, most competitive fights? Sometimes, I guess.

    Had Dana been the kind of guy he portrays himself to be he wouldn’t have said any of that, as it makes him look weak-sauce for not telling Dan to just scram face-to-face, instead of doing those silly wage lowering mind games.

    Had his intent been business, then great; but he went along and bashed Dan for being in a “limbo”–with that said, are we supposed to forget about Roger Huerta and his limbo, too, while we are at it? They promoted the crap out of him and blew the guy up until it exploded in their faces.

    I said it in another site and I’ll say it again: Dana White has but one thing inside his toolbox, and that’s a hammer. I wish him luckk, but it should not surprise anyone that he turns his back and says silly, silly things. That’s him being himself, I guess.

  • Posted by Jack from the Dan Lack of R-E-S-P-C-T page
    “Hendo is 39 and there is no reason for him to want to fight into contention and with Marquardt/Belfort in the MW division, Lil Nog, Jackson, Rua, Evans/TSilva in the LHW division, there are already a lot of guys that are looking for 6 figures and Hendo is equal to all those guys but does not stand out above anyone of them”

    That is just about perfect Jack

    Numbers don’t lie fellas. PPV Numbers weren’t big with Dan and Dan was interview stating that he was looking for numbers of those that create big PPV draws,,so we know that is at least 250k just to show up. I think Dan is a brawler and not a tactician. He swings wildly when he is in trouble. I never watched Dan to see his skill, I watch to see him knock somebody out. He did that against Bisbing which was awesome because Bisbing gets on my nerves sometimes. Other that that his fights have gone the distance in sloppy fashion, ducking his head just throwing hoping to connect.

    The middle weight division is very thin now but I am sure the UFC has there eye on few fighters. Like Dana said. The only fighter they never got was Fedor and that is because Fedor wanted a crazy amount from the UFC. Fedor would have alot more problems with some of the Heavyweights in the UFC than he did with the very Green Rogers.

    Good Luck Dan. Go get that money lol.

  • Angry Mike says:

    I read White’s quote several times to be sure. He didn’t say that Henderson was a bad fighter or a bad guy. He said that from a business perspective, Henderson didn’t generate enough revenue to justify his pay demands. That’s a matter of dollars and cents, not disrespect. White looked at the empirical data and made a studied decision about Henderson’s value. For the UFC, he’s probably right. Henderson is probably more valuable to Strikeforce because his name will help Strikeforce build its brand. Strikeforce and UFC can have different evaluations of Henderson’s worth, and both could be right. Good luck to Henderson, and I’ll be watching.

  • Vogairian says:

    ndizzle:
    hi being an olympic wrestler,and pride champ made him what he is.
    you guys cant be that weak minded

    I would say well over 50% of the people who watch MMA right now couldn’t have told you that without having heard it on a UFC program. Right now most people are saying “Dan Henderson, the dude that crushed Bisping” not “Dan Henderson, the former olympian who held two Pride belts at the same time”.

    I like Dan Henderson a lot as a fighter, but he comes off as a bit of a prima donna who values himself as the best guy in the organization, when clearly, he isn’t even the best in either of his chosen divisions.

  • ndizzle says:

    Vogairian: I would say well over 50% of the people who watch MMA right now couldn’t have told you that without having heard it on a UFC program. Right now most people are saying “Dan Henderson, the dude that crushed Bisping” not “Dan Henderson, the former olympian who held two Pride belts at the same time”.I like Dan Henderson a lot as a fighter, but he comes off as a bit of a prima donna who values himself as the best guy in the organization, when clearly, he isn’t even the best in either of his chosen divisions.

    i get you ,but there is posting that dan hendo is not very good he just overrated,before they were giving him praises and all,now that he left ufc it swayed their mind,i think he is one of the elite mw out there.
    people call sf rosters bunch of ufc rejects,that they go just because they get cut,now look he went on his own but people are gona use the oh he wanted too much money and ufc didnt want him.
    we dont know what goes on behind the doors.people need to factor in that there is alot detalis that go in a contract not just i want i want x amount of money.One is the compensation, but another was keeping his name and likeness rights, having access to intellectual property rights.he gets this in sf maybe he dont get in ufc.maybe he asks for his rights.and thats to much for ufc and they count that in money.i am fan i just get a little bugged when people hate on fighters,maybe he just trying to do whats best for his family.

  • Good old Dana,

    Of course, he’s going to bad mouth Hendo.

    Every fighter who leaves him and go to a rival company will get thrown under the bus. That’s always been Dana…i’m not surprised.

    Well, at least Dan admits he wants Fedor. LOL

    Anyways, can’t wait to see Hendo vs. Moussasi or Shields!!!

  • moosebaby02 says:

    Nick Havok
    I’m not speaking for elsicilian, rather for myself when I say…prior to the Bisping fight, Henderson was playing the role of ‘Decision Dan’ quite well.

    It think he had about 150,000 different reasons to play it that way too.

    Because ever since his devastating thrashing of Wanderlei Silva, Dan became more interested in simply winning than finishing fights or going for the kill.

    He even admitted as much in an interview after his fight with Anderson Silva where he balatantly admitted only trying to control Anderson to win rounds on the judges scorecards…Not go for the finish.

    Then agianst Palhares he played it very conservatively, and never fully engaged Rousmir. Yeah, I know he not suppose to jump into his guard, but Dan was striking and then getting the eff on out of there.

    Which got him the win…and an extra $150,000.

    Then against Franklin, Dan controlled the first two rounds, and then backed off the entire third as play it safe and protect his precious win (and extra $150,000!!!!!).

    Did I mention I hate win bonuses?

    Anywho, I was angry at Dan for morphing into ‘Decision Dan’ before my very eyes. I hated seeing him never fully engage, and never go for the finish. Being a Dan Henderson fan it was very aggrivating. I mean I was like the only guy in a house full of dudes who was rooting for him against Wanderlei in Pride.

    He has only recently redeemed himself with pounding he put on Michael Bisping.

    He finally went for the kill again.

    This is exactly what I have been saying. No biggie here. Let him go.
    I HAD more to say but after reading all the I hate Dana for letting the second coming of Christ go post I have decided not to argue with people who think they know how to make more money than Dana the F brothers and Zuffa all together

  • moosebaby02 says:

    but Dana didnt have to put his words the way he did. i will agree with that. he is an ass

  • gueda says:

    i loved dana and is masse destruction of the ufc.strikeforce in 2 years will be bigger than the ufc thanks to dana and is big ego.i think they might show him the door pretty soon. are they gone sacrifice all there good fighters for one big jerk….

  • gueda says:

    there a little something for dana’s lover. you don’t treat people like that even if they are the best or the worst fighter you ever seen. they bring bread and butter on your table and you don’t deserve it at all.

  • silkshot61 says:

    How is this suprising anyone? Of course Dana is going to say things along this line. He’d do it with any fighter, if you need an example look at his failure with Fedor. However I have to agree with him, the Hendo of old warrents being signed for big money, not the Hendo of late. Take away the Bisping fight what has he done, a controvesial split decision with a washed up Franklin and a couple of loses. He lost his belts to Rampage and Anderson. It’s not what you have done that gets you money, its what have you done for me lately and the answer for Hendo is not very much.

  • Niv says:

    Some interesting comments as usual but SF will become the top mma organization in the world if Dana doesn’t learn how to become a professional.

    If any of you think the UFC is untouchable you will re-evaluate your position in a couple of years.

    The UFC bought Pride out, what four years ago? The UFC has been the top org out there for approximately 4 or 5 years, that’s nothing!

    They have done very well in those years but now they need to step up and be a big league organization and stop acting like a backyard bully.

    Dana White will be the downfall of the UFC if he doesn’t get his act straight. Imagine the commissioners of football, baseball, hockey or any other major sports league acting like Dana White does, people would call for their heads.

    There have been big name hockey players who were still dominant who left the NHL to play in Russia. No managers came out and publicly ripped these guys.

    David Beckham probably the most recognized soccer player in the world went to LA for big bucks, no one in a management position for the clubs he played for publicly humiliated him or insulted him, that’s business.

    Sorry guys I know Dana White has a cult following but if you really love mma and the UFC you should be calling for his head, he’s simply bad for the sport.

  • AlphaOmega says:

    Just a curious question. If Henderson can win his 4 fights in SF by decisive manner, do you think the UFC will reevaluate the stance on offering him what he wants? And on the flip side, if Henderson gets dominated or has poor showings in his 4 SF fights, do you think the UFC will want nothing to do with him? I know its shocking this post isn’t complianing about dana, or about any of the current signing stuff, I feel thats in the past Hendo’s signed, its over, move on.

  • OJ Stevenson says:

    Listen to dana white read between the lines…Talent has nothing to do with the UFC its about who is popular and can pack seats .IE you can be A dedicated Martial artist and you can be The best but if Dana dont think you are popular enough to “USE” for his own agendas then YOU bring nothing to the table. Let me say this…Henderson Has NEVER been knocked out !!! brings nothing to the table. lol thankyou for saying that Dana,thankyou.

  • gueda says:

    dana’s place is in the wwf with brock lesnar they would make a fortune insulting people together just like a couple…lollll

  • fanoftna33 says:

    I think maybe Dana White could just trade places with Shane Macmahon since he is coming to the UFC.

  • Yourdaddydevilandlord says:

    Dude thought he should still be earning the kind of money he would have got had he beat Rampage and Silva and held both belts. He didn’t win either belt, and he turned 39. Plus he squeaked out a decision against Franklin that he could have lost, and yet he still thinks he was first in line for another title shot with Silva and champion money? Why did he think he was about to get outta that RNC by having his eyeballs pop out and beat Silva about the face and head? Sorry, he was delusional. If Strikeforce wants to pay him an assload to lose to Mousasi fine, See Affliction, EliteXC etc.. but don’t think Dana is too butthurt over this, he knows Dan is on his way down just like everyone but Dan knows. Don’t get me wrong, I like Hendo, he is a good guy, and a legendary fighter. But he isn’t a top contender or draw anymore and anyone who thinks he is gonna roll through two divisions in Strikeforce is high. I’ll give him Shields, let him have that boring fight and belt, but if he beat Mousasi I think I would chalk it up to an overrated Mousasi than a champion in his prime Hendo.

  • xxDejay032xx says:

    king mah mah: He’ll bring plenty to Strikeforce’s table. And I’ll be watching.

    Yup me toooo

    king mah mah: He’ll bring plenty to Strikeforce’s table. And I’ll be watching.

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