Through all the injuries, cancelled cards and missed title fights, there is one thing beyond all that which makes Dana White the most disappointed about the 2012 fight calendar. That would be UFC 149 which took place in Calgary. The fights that had put some interest were Urijah Faber taking on Renan Barao for the interim bantamweight title, and Hector Lombard making his UFC debut against the always tough Tim Boetsch. Despite those match-ups, the card “sucked,” in White’s words. He feels disappointed because the Calgary fans were expecting a great card when they bought their tickets, and despite the pay-per-view, it just did not deliver.
“In all honesty, I think we delivered great events all year…except for Calgary,” White told Ariel Helwani of MMA Fighting in a UFC 155 pre-fight interview in Las Vegas. “I think that I’m always very confident going into an event that we’re going to deliver because the guys do, the guys always deliver, and we didn’t. We didn’t deliver in Calgary and that was probably the lowest of the lows. Even canceling the Jones event wasn’t as bad as the Calgary event. You know, we went in there, we sold out, and there was a lot of people who – that were upset about that Calgary event.”
Maybe if injuries had not ruined what would have been the main event the card could have been more exciting. The cards first main event was between featherweight champion Jose Aldo defending his title against challenger Erik Koch, but an injury to Aldo moved the fight off the card. Even Hector Lombard was not supposed to land on the card, because he was replacing Michael Bisping in his fight against Boetsch. It is not known if a fight with Bisping and Boetsch would have interested, but Bisping is known as an exciting fighter for the fans. Always bringing in viewership, loved or hated.
“It’s something that really bothers me and it’s the thing that stands out in my head the most that I do want to go back to Calgary and I want to deliver next time.”
Even the best fight on the card between Matt Riddle and Chris Clements was originally set as a fight between Yoshihiro Akiyama and Thiago Alves. The fight between Riddle and Clements holds some stigma since it had been changed into a no contest after Riddle failed his drug test. Other exciting fighters such as Big Nog, Mauricio Rua, and Bibiano Fernandes were all once rumored on the card, but injuries, contract disputes, or pulling them to put them on another card left the card bare. While it’s never known how two fighters will fight when they get into the octagon, Dana White was very displeased with how his fighters fought on this card. That is something he has promised to make up for in the coming year.