Tyron Woodley is as good as it gets in the UFC welterweight class, but he’s had trouble winning over fans.
The UFC welterweight champion often is booed when he makes public appearances, even though he has held the belt for almost a year. Woodley has blamed racial bias as to why he hasn’t reached peak popularity, while others have pointed to his tactical — and, let’s be honest, boring — UFC 209 victory over Stephen Thompson as a reason why he’s not loved.
When asked to give his reaction to Woodley believing No.3-ranked Demian Maia was “stupid” to agree to fight No. 5-ranked Jorge Masvidal rather than wait for a welterweight title shot, White didn’t shy away from bashing the champ.
“Obviously, I don’t agree (with Woodley),” White said. “That’s what drives me crazy. He’s telling people who should wait and who should whatever. Listen, Tyron Woodley and I have a good relationship, but that’s one of the big problems with Tyron Woodley. When you’re a fighter and you’re ranked in the top 10 or the top five, you fight whoever is available and whoever is ready to fight.
“I actually applaud Maia for taking this fight. It’s a tough fight. If you believe you’re the best in the world, you should fight anybody. You should fight all comers. That’s one of the problems that Tyron Woodley has and why the fans turn on Tyron Woodley. I respect Maia for taking this fight. It’s going to be a great fight and whoever wins this fight is obviously next in line for a title shot.”
This is clearly not the first time Woodley and White have butted heads, and it’ll be interesting to see how the dynamic between Woodley, White and UFC fans develops going forward.
Thumbnail photo via Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY Sports Images