Stephen A. Smith reiterated his stance on Dana White slapping his wife.
The UFC president made his first public appearance on Wednesday since a domestic violence altercation on New Year’s Eve. White claimed that what he did was unforgivable and nobody should be defending him in any capacity. During an episode of First Take, Smith reacted to those comments by saying:
“Dana White knows exactly where I stand. He was wrong. You do not put your hands on a woman, period. I also said that Dana White deserves the same punishment he would hand down to one of his fighters…”
Although Smith believes White should be punished, the ESPN TV personality doesn’t think he should be fired. He had this to say:
“Now, am I an advocate of cancel culture where you want him to lose his job? No, and I’m not apologizing for that. Married 27 years to his wife. His wife spoke about this issue, as well. They are working it out as a family… The fact of the matter is, at the end of the day, Dana White was wrong. You do not do what he did to his wife, which he has openly admitted. Does he deserve to be punished? Yes, he does. Does he deserve to be the person who decides what his punishment is? No, he does not.”
During White’s media day appearance, he questioned what type of punishment would be valid. Most people agree there should be some form of punishment, but days are going by, and nothing is happening. Meanwhile, Smith believes the UFC president shouldn’t create his punishment, despite ESPN and Endeavor refusing to comment.
Dana White: "We've had plenty of discussions internally. With Ari [Emanuel], ESPN. Nobody is happy about this. Neither am I. But it happened and I have to deal with it. What is my punishment? Here is my punishment: I gotta walk around… and this is how I'm labelled" pic.twitter.com/YLuXPzL6Vu
— Shakiel Mahjouri (@Shak_Fu) January 11, 2023
Stephen A. Smith shuts down talks about him downplaying Dana White slapping his wife
Some people believe Dana White wasn’t getting enough backlash, especially from ESPN, which is partnered with the UFC. Stephen A. Smith was the primary target for those questioning why White wasn’t being chastised like other sports figures in prior situations. Smith responded on a recent First Take episode by saying:
“I wanna get into this because, you know, this is First Take, and we don’t run from issues, and we ain’t about to start now, and people who have implied that somehow, some way we run from issues or we soft soak stuff, I don’t think they know what the hell they are talking about…”
The first UFC event of 2023 goes down on January 14. It’ll be intriguing to see if White’s situation slowly disappears with consistent media appearances. It’s difficult to determine what punishment he should receive, but most people agree an apology shouldn’t be enough to move on from domestic violence.
Dana White slapping his wife up in a night club🤯 pic.twitter.com/CAJXX1kCB7
— Full Combat (@fullcombatoff) January 3, 2023