EXCLUSIVE: UFC supremo Dana White reveals how his son blanked him after he was caught slapping his wife of 26 years while drunk in a nightclub – and says his ‘apology’ was actually from both of them, and directed at his kids
- Dana White sat down for a tell-all interview with Talk TV host Piers Morgan
- The UFC chief revealed how his eldest son reacted to his controversy last year
- White was filmed slapping his wife following a disagreement on New Years Eve
Dana White has revealed how his eldest son ignored him for four days after he was filmed slapping his wife Anne during a row in a club in Mexico on New Year’s Eve.
White, who was newly-instated as UFC CEO following the historic merger between the UFC and WWE, sat down with Talk TV host Piers Morgan on ‘Uncensored’ to discuss a number of personal and business matters.
One topic was the controversy which White found himself in at the start of the year, after footage showed him appearing to say something to Anne, who reacted by slapping him. He then slapped her across the face before the fracas was broken up.
In the weeks that followed, White issued a groveling apology and admitted there was ‘no excuse’ for his actions at El Squid Roe in Cabo San Lucas.
Despite this, there were calls from the public for White to resign from his role at the UFC and, as he revealed in the interview, he faced backlash from his family as well.
UFC CEO Dana White (R) sat down for a tell-all interview with Talk TV host Piers Morgan (L)
White was caught in controversy on New Years Eve after footage emerged that showed the UFC chief slapping his wife, Anne (R), during a conflict in a night club
Morgan initially asked White about how his relationship with his own parents has shaped the strong connection that he has with his children now.
‘I have been married for almost 30 years,’ White explained. ‘You go through a lot of things in a marriage.
‘I just went through some stuff last New Year’s Eve, these things happen, what you don’t do is you don’t leave, you don’t quit, you don’t give up and you stay, you don’t stay together just for your children, but you stay, I made a commitment’.
Morgan then delved further into the incident on New Years and asked White about how difficult it was to overcome that obstacle as a family.
‘I mean everybody was acting like there needs to be some big apology to the world,’ White said. ‘No, the apology was to my kids, for me and my wife.
‘Nobody wants to see their dumb drunk parents slapping each other on TMZ, do you know what I mean? Our oldest son didn’t talk to us for like four days, and the other kids had to deal with some stuff too. It’s embarrassing.
‘The only apology that needed to be made was to our children, and the only relationships that needed to be handled immediately, was between us and our kids, and we did it, we handled it and we got through it as a family’.
Both White and wife Anne faced the media in the weeks that followed, as they asserted that the UFC chief was ‘acting out of character’ in the viral clip.
White revealed that his eldest son, Dana White III (middle), refused to speak to either of his parents for ‘four days’ after the incident in Mexico went viral
White revealed, in his interview, that he prioritised fixing his family relations above all else
It was a moment that led to fans calling for his resignation at the UFC but, from his interview with Morgan, White makes clear that his primary concern at the time was mending his family ties and not his business matters.
‘It’s definitely not fun, but it’s something that, you know, as a man, you have to stand up and you have to deal with it and handle your business, take your lumps and deal with whatever comes with it.
‘But like I said, the most important part of it is to handle it as a family first. As long as you get your family straight, I could give a s*** what everybody else thinks.’
Despite calls for White to resign, the American businessman remained in his role at UFC president up until this week – when he was recently appointed UFC CEO.
White takes up the new role following the company’s CEO following their historic merger with the WWE on Wednesday afternoon.
White was in attendance as Endeavor announced the successful merger between the UFC and WWE, which was finalised on Thursday afternoon
It was announced in April that WWE would be sold to the Endeavour group and together would be merged with UFC to form a brand new company.
Endeavor – who own UFC – will hold a 51 per cent stake in the combined company, while WWE shareholders will hold 49 per cent, according to the agreement.
It was confirmed that the deal values the new company at more than £17.3bn ($21.4bn) according to the companies, with UFC valued at £9.8bn ($12.1bn) and WWE at £7.5bn ($9.3bn).
The name for the merger had just been listed as ‘Newco’ on filings, before shifting to New Whale Inc. In May, a spokesperson confirmed it would be called TKO Group Holdings.
Tune in to Talk TV at 8pm tonight to watch the exclusive interview with Dana White and Piers Morgan on Uncensored.
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