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Dana White On Judging In MMA, Fighting As A Job

UFC president Dana White was left with no short list of reasons to be miffed after UFC 119 went down this weekend. Between horrendous judging and puzzling tentativeness on the part of some of the main card fighters, White had plenty to fume over Sunday morning. White vented some of the anger generated by the event to today and pointed to the poor judging and snore-inducing main event as his primary sources of discontent.

In the wake of the atrocious Dunham-Sherk decision (Sherk was awarded a split decision over Dunham despite losing the second and third rounds by most accounts) White repeated his mantra, “Don’t leave it in the hands of the judges.”

“Dunham won that fight,” White said. “The judges give it to Sherk. People then ask themselves, ‘What the f— was that? It makes people angry. It p—ed me off. You have that, and then the main event [a dud between Frank Mir and Mirko Filipovic], and then even though there were a bunch of great fights, especially in the prelims, and that’s what people are left with.”

White sees this latest judging blunder (courtesy repeat-offenders Glenn Trowbridge and Cecil Peoples) as more evidence that fighters should do everything within their power to halt the fight before it reaches the judges’ hands.

“Our judges are so bad,” he said. “That’s why I tell guys, you better get in there and handle your business yourself.”

White expressed his displeasure in the evening’s main event (a three-round snoozer that wasn’t even saved when Frank Mir put Mirko “Cro Cop” to sleep with a knee in the fight’s closing moments) by declining to award Mir with a default Knockout of the Night bonus (worth $70,000) even though he was the only fighter on the card to score a KO. White reasoned that fighters are working while in the cage and poor on-the-job performances should be viewed the same as in any other career.

“You go to your job and don’t perform; what will happen? And when people say, ‘Hey, these guys put their lives on the line,’ that’s a crock of s—,” said White. “This sport is so safe. These guys have chosen to be fighters!”

The outspoken UFC boss said that fighters are in the cage on their own free will and that those who find themselves unwilling to do their job should simply seek employment elsewhere.

“These guys aren’t going in to Afghanistan,” he said. “The US military puts their life on the line. Police, firefighters walk into the line of fire … UFC fighters do not. These are smart guys with college educations. If they don’t want to do this, go out and get a real job.”