On Tuesday, the Nevada State Athletic Commission (NSAC) convened to make crucial decisions on the futures of Conor McGregor, Khabib Nurmagomedov and Jon Jones.
The NSAC began by disciplining Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov for their UFC 229 post-fight brawl. McGregor received a $50,000 fine and a six month suspension, while Nurmagomedov received a much steeper $500,000 fine and a nine-month suspension that can be reduced to six months if he completes an anti-bullying PSA.
The next item on the agenda was Jon Jones — more specifically, whether or not the light heavyweight champion would be granted a license to fight Anthony Smith after UFC 235 on March 2 in Las Vegas.
After much deliberation, the NSAC decided to grant Jones a license on a one-fight basis.
Speaking on SportsCenter on Tuesday night, UFC President Dana White gave his take on the NSAC’s decision-making on Khabib Nurmagomedov, Conor McGregor, and Jon Jones.
The UFC boss began by sharing his feeling that Nurmagomedov’s punishment was a little over the top.
“I was obviously surprised how much they put on Khabib,” said White (transcript via MMA Fighting). “It was a half-million dollars and six months if he does some PSAs. They had the whole thing contained in seconds. It was a little harsh in my opinion. It is what it is.”
White also discussed the NSAC’s claim that it will start punishing fighters for over-the-top trash talk — mentioning Conor McGregor as a specific example.
“It’s a fight. At the end of the day, it’s a fight,” he said. “Sometimes you come across people that don’t like each other and there’s a lot of bad blood. That was in the case in this fight. That’s what we do it’s the fight business. These guys are talking about fighters saying mean things to each other and all this other stuff. If you break it down and you go back to when Ali fought Frazier, and you look at the times when it happened, the stuff he said about Frazier and to Frazier was horrible. Horrible things you didn’t say to somebody else back then.”
Finally, Dana White gave his take on Jon Jones’ licensure and the drug-testing drama that seems to follow the light heavyweight champ everywhere he goes.
“I’m rooting for the guy,” White said. “I hope he does it. He’s one of the best ever maybe the greatest ever. Hopefully, he’ll keep his personal life together and pass these tests and continue to cement his legacy in the sport.”
What do you think of Dana White’s comments on Jon Jones, Khabib Nurmagomedov and Conor McGregor?
This article first appeared on BJPENN.COM on 1/30/2019.