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Dana White: The UFC Isn’t Mainstream Just Yet

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Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

The UFC has come a long way since it first began twenty years ago. When it began, very few people thought it would ever become a success. Most people didn’t even consider mixed martial arts to be a real sport.

Today, the UFC is internationally recognized as the largest MMA organization on the planet. They recruit fighters from many different countries and host events in various nations all across the world.

According to UFC President Dana White, that’s still not good enough. White wants the UFC to be mainstream, and he doesn’t think it has reached that point yet.

For Dana White, mainstream means that every person in every city of the world is familiar with your brand. An example would be the NBA.

“It takes a long time,” White said during a conference call prior to UFC Fight For The Troops 3. In an article published on FoxSports.com, White said he was at a Patriots vs Steelers game with his kids when he spoke to a fan sitting behind him and the man said he had never heard of the UFC.

“He didn’t even know (Patriots defensive end) Chandler Jones’ brother was the champ of the UFC,” White said, referring to light heavyweight titleholder Jon Jones. “He was asking me if it was regional.”

That was very disappointing to the ambitious businessman who has been with the company for thirteen years now.

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Steve Sohanaki
Steve became interested in combat sports when he joined his high school’s wrestling team as freshman. His experience as a wrestler sparked his interest in mixed martial arts when he recognized the compatibility between the two sports. From there, he continued to wrestle all throughout college until he earned his bachelor’s degree in history. Steve’s interests in combat sports center mostly around grappling, but he’s also interested in the history of the sport and where it’s headed in the future.