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UFC is promoting Toney / Couture as a freakshow

I was wondering how the UFC was planning on promoting Randy Couture vs James Toney and this week they debuted their chosen strategy: they’re admitting it’s pretty stupid and setting it up as MMA putting boxing in it’s place. Here’s Dana on Luke Thomas’ MMA Nation radio show:

It’s a freak show. I said I’d never put on a freak show fight and I’m doing it. Listen, this guy [Toney] chased me around the country saying bad things about the sport. If he wants to get his ass whooped, I’m gonna let him. You want me to tell you, ‘James Toney vs. Randy Couture is gonna be the greatest fight in the history of the sport?’ No. I’m building a great card around this fight. You’re not buying the James Toney vs. Randy Couture fight alone. Here’s what I expect; the bell rings, they come to the center of the Octagon, circle each other for a little bit, Randy double legs him, puts him against the fence, squashes his head and the fight is over.

If that wasn’t explicit enough, here’s an exchange that went on at the UFC 116 post-event press conference:

As UFC heavyweight champion Brock Lesnar joked with White at the UFC 116 post-fight press conference about how he was brought into the promotion simply to be made an example of, White flipped the script.

“No, we’re going to make an example of James Toney,” he said with a laugh.

Of course, this is always followed up with the required “James Toney is a great boxer and we have to respect that” line, but all pretense that this is a legit fight is out the window. That’s actually kinda nice … there’s nothing worse than being served up cat poo as if it were caviar. But when we all admit it’s cat poo, it is pretty funny seeing it there on a nice upscale restaurant plate, maybe with some sprigs of cilantro around it to add to the presentation.