The beef between UFC CEO Dana White and Showtime Sports President Stephen Espinoza is alive and well.
It’s no secret that White and Espinoza don’t get along. Back in 2017, White had to play nice with Showtime in order to pull off the mega fight between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor. The UFC boss hasn’t been shy expressing his disdain for Espinoza over the years.
White has claimed that Showtime purposely shorted the PPV buyrate of the Mayweather vs. McGregor boxing match in a press release. Espinoza has fired back at that claim, saying Showtime doesn’t fake its PPV numbers, insinuating that White greatly inflates UFC numbers when it’s convenient for him to do so.
Dana White & Stephen Espinoza Trade Barbs
Recently, Dana White responded to rumors claiming Showtime will be exiting the boxing world in 2024. The UFC boss said, “F*ck Espinoza,” during a post-fight press conference for a recent Contender Series event. Espinoza was aware of White’s comments and took a shot at the UFC during a press conference for the Canelo Alvarez vs. Jermell Charlo fight (via Michael Benson).
Showtime’s Stephen Espinoza firing shots back at Dana White at the Canelo Alvarez vs Jermell Charlo press conference: “Not all combat sports is the same. No disrespect to anyone, but there are levels to this. This event will generate a gate (money from ticket sales) of over…
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) September 27, 2023
“Not all combat sports is the same,” Espinoza said. “No disrespect to anyone, but there are levels to this. This event will generate a gate (money from ticket sales) of over $20 million. Our third $20 million+ gate in the last six months. To put that in perspective – the UFC has never done a $20 million gate in its entire history. We’ve done it three times since April.”
Never one to hold back, Dana White responded on social media with a scathing post.
Dana White blasts back at Showtime’s Stephen Espinoza on Instagram today as he brands him a “weasel” and a “scumbag”… pic.twitter.com/YsQ522Xuxu
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) September 28, 2023
“That’s exactly the type of response I would expect from that Weasel Espinoza,” White wrote. “That scumbag has absolutely nothing to do with the success of Canelo, Ryan Garcia, and Terrence Crawford. Those guys are mega stars and they are the ones responsible for driving the gates in their fights. For him to even try and take any credit at all shows you exactly what an arrogant, delusional POS that guy is. For this clown to talk about ‘levels’ is hilarious. The production of the fights on Showtime is an embarrassment and I have been saying that FOREVER. He is a little guy with a BIG yap, and is a complete phony. I’m not at all surprised this is the end for them. It should have come way sooner. Sorry to see you go Weasel, enjoy your retirement.”
Dana White on Showtime leaving boxing.
“Fuck Espinoza” pic.twitter.com/iSbnQ3EfbB
— Combat Sports Today 📰 (@CSTodayNews) September 27, 2023
“That’s incredibly unfortunate,” joked White at the post-fight press conference for DWCS Season 7, Week 8. “Production of that show is fantastic, the guy who runs Showtime boxing is a great human being. It’s unfortunate to hear this.
“F*** Espinoza, and it’s about time that s***** product is off the air.”
During an interview with Fight Hype, Espinoza blasted White for his “idiotic abuse” of others. He also said the UFC boss would be wise to be more articulate and “elevate his vocabulary” if he’s going to be a leader of a publicly traded company.
Here’s the full Fight Hype interview with Stephen Espinoza: