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UFC Press Conference News

At 4pm eastern time the UFC held a press conference announcing a new television deal with Spike TV and to discuss the recently announced UFC 79 co-main event bout between Chuck Liddell and Wanderlei Silva. UFC President Dana White, Liddell, Silva, and recent UFC-signee Brock Lesnar all participated in the press conference

Read on for news from the press conference about the UFC’s extension with Spike, BJ Penn’s title fight, 2008 UFC locations, Dan Henderson possibly facing Anderson Silva, Brock Lesnar’s debut, Liddell vs. Silva being for number one contender status, and more…


  • UFC President Dana White announced that the UFC has signed an extension with Spike TV.
  • White says that he announced the signing of Brock Lesnar, the Liddell-Silva fight, and the new Spike TV deal as a result of Couture’s resignation but that the UFC press conference being the same time as Randy’s was not to “f***” with him.
  • He there’s a very good possibility that Dan Henderson may fight Anderson Silva next.
  • The Spike TV deal includes 12 UFC Fight Night cards.
  • Dana White says that he has Randy and that Randy has not said he wants to fight elsewhere. He says Couture is pissed off at him and most of it is a result of things being spread on the internet.
  • The Spike TV deal includes two new seasons in 2008 and 2009 and single season of the series in 2010 and 2011. A new fight series will debut in 2010 with one season in 2010 and 2011. It also includes 4 UFC Fight Night cards minimum per year for the next 3 years.
  • The BJ Penn fight will likely take place in December at UFC 79.
  • It is too early to determine what fights could take place at UFC 80 in England.
  • The Heavyweight Championship will not be vacated until Couture says to Dana he is retired and that he feels they will reconcile their differences. White says he hopes to sit down with Couture now that he is back in Vegas.
  • The UFC Fight Night events will start to move to additional locations.
  • The new Spike TV deal allows them to sign additional deals with ESPN, HBO, etc.
  • Chiacgo is expected to host a UFC event in 2008 as soon as regulations are finalized.
  • White confirms that he doesn’t know the exact situation with Andrei Arlovski but that he isn’t being penalized and the UFC wants him back in the octagon soon.
  • White adds that he doesn’t regret the UFC not completing a deal with HBO and praises Spike for being a great partner.
  • The new fight series debuting in 2010 will be a live show “a level above” the UFC Fight Night shows. This will take the place of one season of The Ultimate Fighter beginning in 2010.
  • UFC 78 is on pace to be a sellout and ticket sales are going well.
  • White says there were “fifty” reasons the HBO deal didn’t happen and that both brands wanted to protect themselves. Says a deal would have been big for both companies and still expects one in the future but says now isn’t the time.
  • When asked about the newer MMA promotions White says they cannot compete with the UFC and that a lot of people have tried and failed to challenge the UFC. He says they provide places for younger talent to fight before coming to the UFC.
  • Lesnar will debut at UFC 81 in February on Super Bowl Saturday.
  • They say there is no MMA awards show in the works.
  • Lesnar says he expects to be in the heavyweight title picture soon and is focused on winning his first fight.
  • White says he is working on something “huge” for 2008 in terms of another distribution deal though no specifics were given.
  • White added that he likes Kurt Angle but that Lesnar is the real deal.
  • All UFC Fight Nights in Las Vegas will be at the Palms.
  • In an attempt to change up The Ultimate Fighter one possibility is moving the house to another location outside of Vegas.
  • White calls ProElite “internet whores” because they are streaming the Couture press conference.
  • The UFC has 250 people under contract.
  • No opponent was confirmed for Lesnar’s UFC 81 debut.
  • White says the UFC is targeting the Latino market and says the UFC is planning on returning to Texas in 2008.
  • He says he doesn’t think most WWE wrestlers could transition to the UFC but that Brock is an exception.
  • White says he will talk to Randy when Couture is ready to talk and that the dispute is a result of his “hollywood agent”.
  • White says he hasn’t done anything with ProElite but that they (and other competition) are good for the sport and will get guys fights.
  • The new fights on Spike are expected to continue to grow the sport in addition to keeping current fans.
  • White says there is a lot of potential in the sport still and doesn’t feel the UFC is mainstream yet.
  • Liddell says he can’t wait to get back in and fight again.
  • White confirms that the UFC is still working on a TV deal in Japan.
  • The UFC will be coming to Canada sometime in 2008 though no specifics were given.
  • In one of the humorous moments Wanderlei Silva says he doesn’t gamble because he “loves his money”.
  • White says that the winner of Liddell-Silva is likely the top contender for the light heavyweight title.
  • Lesnar says he has not talked to Tim Sylvia about a possible fight and that he currently weighs approximately 275 pounds, down from 300-plus pounds when in the WWE.
  • Dana White says there is no possibility that the UFC becomes a publicly traded company.
  • The UFC will be returning to Florida in 2008.

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