by Jeff Cain – MMAWeekly.com
UFC president Dana White’s stance on female mixed martial arts has softened over the years.
It wasn’t long ago that the brash company figurehead proclaimed women would never fight in his organization, but White has backed off those comments recently.
“Here’s my thing with girls fighting. Right now the place that it’s in is much like female boxing at one time. You probably have three or four girls that are really good and a lot of girls that aren’t, so it makes for some real bad mismatches,” said White. “But I think as the sport continues to grow around the world and more and more kids start getting involved in mixed martial arts I think that’s going to change.”
The defunct EliteXC and Strikeforce have had moderate success putting on female fights, some even headlining fight cards. Gina Carano became on overnight sensation in EliteXC, and Cristiane “Cyborg” Santos and Sarah Kaufman have gained notoriety. Bellator Fighting Championships has recently begun showcasing female bouts, as well.
Zuffa, parent company to the UFC and WEC, kicked around the thought of having females in the WEC at one point. There was a time when the UFC was looking into going back to Japan and considered having a women’s bout on the card, but they’ve yet to return to Japan and yet to have females compete. But all of that could change in the coming years.
“I went to this fight one time in Northern California. It was a small show and these two girls were fighting on the card. One girl fought just like Randy Couture and looked just like Randy Couture. And this other girl was beautiful and looked like she took about four Tae Bo classes. It was one of the worst fights I’ve seen in my life and you can imagine what the outcome was. And it really left a bad taste in my mouth, but that was a while ago.
“This sport has grown so much and there’s so many more girls training,” said White. “I’m sure they’re going to change women’s MMA over the next five or six years.”