Dan Severn is a UFC Hall of Famer and MMA legend. Fighting since the mid-nineties, he has amassed an outstanding record of 79-14-7. He is one of the pioneers of the sport and the first true wrestler to win a UFC event. Severn recently sat down with Percy Crawford of fighthype.com to get us caught up on his life the past several years, give us his thoughts on the UFC and Dana White, and much more.
Severn On What He’s Been Up To The Past Several Years:
I keep a rather busy schedule, but I do like what I do. I’m doing just a little bit of everything. I still step into the squared circle for professional wrestling periodically. I still climb into a cage every 6-8 weeks doing the mixed martial arts thing there and then any of the weekends between there, it’s either doing appearances or seminars, speaking engagements and probably for the last 5 years now, I’ve been working with law enforcement. I’ve designed a defensive tactics ground program that several states have adopted and added to their training academies. I have a 10,000 square foot training facility on my property where I teach daily classes. Teaching amateur wrestling is still my first love. I also teach professional wrestling, mixed martial arts and I have other instructors that teach boxing, kickboxing, Muay Thai and things of that nature. I’ve coached at two Division I Universities; Arizona State for five years and Michigan State for three years. I’ve been basically self-employed ever since the 1992 Olympics. Most people only know me because I’ve climbed in cages doing mixed martial arts and worked for the WWF, but that’s actually such a small portion of what I’ve been about. Quite frankly Percy, I won my first national title back in 1972 so when I tell people that I’ve been terrorizing young athletes here for decades, I mean I’ve been terrorizing them for decades. Most people are a flash in the pan, but no, I’m pretty much a proven commodity. I’ve been around a long time and, like you say, at age 49, I still scare the young bucks pretty good.
Severn On Dana White And The UFC Today:
The game has changed and the company has changed. The UFC is coming under more scrutiny all of the time. It’s not the same product that it once was. I do a lot of things with mixed martial arts. I work with a lot of other companies. I do have a passion for the sport and I would like to have a positive influence in the direction of the sport because the bottom line is, you’re taking care of an athlete. I really don’t see that happening with a Dana White at the helm of the UFC. I think they’ve done a lot of good things for the sport, but at the same token, they have a cocky, conceded rrogance that is coming about them and I don’t care for it. It’s changed and I don’t know who the leadership comes from. From what I know, they have the two brothers, the Fertitta brothers, that own basically 90% of the UFC and Dana White owns the other 10%, but Dana White is kind of the face of the UFC and seems like he is the one making the most comments about everything that’s going on. He may not be the best person that should be out there articulating his opinions. If he is, they may want to bring somebody in there to groom him a little more and help him on his presentation skills. I politically danced around that one a little bit (laughing).
Severn On Mark Cuban:
He owns High Def. TV. That could be a real viable player, but how much does he know about the sport? He better surround himself with good people that really know something and have some creative ideas because there are a lot of fight companies. What’s going to make you different is some type of creativity that comes along with it. I didn’t see it, but I was told he was on “Dancing with the Stars” so this is someone that doesn’t mind getting out there and doing things. He also owns a professional team and he seems like the kind of guy that really doesn’t mind getting out there.
For more on what other UFC Hall of Famers had to say about the UFC and Dana White, follow the links below:
For Randy Couture’s comments click here.
For Ken Shamrocks comments click here.
To read the rest of the Dan Severn interview click here.