Dana White has some profession recommendation for Merab Dvalishvili.
Following Dvalishvili’s impressive win over former bantamweight champion Petr Yan in the primary occasion of UFC Las Vegas, White reacted to Dvalishvili’s vow by no means to combat his shut good friend, present bantamweight champ Aljamain Sterling. Dvalishvili has now received 9 straight fights, the longest lively streak within the UFC’s 135-pound division, however he has expressed zero curiosity in difficult Sterling for the title.
“I don’t keep in mind who the hell I used to be speaking to the opposite day about this and I used to be like, ‘We don’t should cope with that bulls*** anymore,’” White mentioned, chatting with the media at UFC APEX on Saturday evening. “Again within the early days, the camps had been so small you didn’t have a whole lot of completely different choices, so we had a whole lot of these guys saying, ‘Oh, he’s my good friend, he’s my good friend.’ You possibly can nonetheless be buddies and need what your good friend has.
“It will be a very unhealthy thought for Merab to go down that path.”
Up to now, a number of high-profile contenders have spoken about not eager to should combat buddies to earn a shot on the title. American Kickboxing Academy was as soon as house to a trio of welterweight contenders in Jon Fitch, Josh Koscheck, and Mike Swick, all of whom ceaselessly said they might not combat each other (Fitch and Koscheck each challenged Georges St-Pierre for the UFC title at completely different factors of their careers).
Jon Jones and Rashad Evans memorably refused to combat each other after coaching, although their relationship devolved, and the 2 met in a light-weight heavyweight title bout at UFC 145.
No matter how White feels about Dvalishvili’s matchmaking selections, he had nothing however reward for the way the bantamweight contender carried out within the UFC Las Vegas primary occasion.
“Unbelievable combat,” White mentioned. “Often Petr Yan units the tempo in these forms of fights, tonight Merab set the tempo and placed on an awesome efficiency, particularly his first time going into championship rounds like that.”
White isn’t going to push Dvalishvili right into a title shot in opposition to Sterling if he doesn’t need it — a moot level for the time being anyway with Sterling set to combat the returning Henry Cejudo at UFC 288 on Could 6 — however his emotions on Dvalishvili prioritizing friendship over the championship are clear.
“Does Merab desire a shot on the title, or would Merab reasonably have folks underneath him bounce over him and him should tackle all these completely different high guys when he’s not even getting the title shot when he’s subsequent in line for it?” White requested. “That’s a private determination that he must make. If that’s what he desires to do, I can inform you how that story ends. It’s not a very good ending to that story. However he’s a giant boy, he can determine that out on his personal.”
Watch Dana White’s media scrum beneath, courtesy of MMA Mania.