BOSTON — Dana White fielded a whole bunch of questions in the wee hours of Sunday morning after UFC 292 at TD Garden.

Most of them centered on Sean O’Malley’s shocking knockout of Aljamain Sterling for the bantamweight title, Zhang Weili’s dominant women’s strawweight championship defense against Amanda Lemos and everything else that transpired Saturday night in UFC’s highly entertaining pay-per-view event.

But one question brought out the Boston sports fan in White.

The UFC president was asked about broadcaster Jon Anik – who, like White, is a New England native – saying the Patriots won’t go to the Super Bowl this NFL season.

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“That’s just (expletive) rude,” White immediately replied. “Jon Anik, are you crazy?”

Of course, White is aware of the tempered expectations surrounding the Patriots ahead of the 2023 campaign. Oddsmakers project New England to finish in last place in the stacked AFC East, continuing a run of mediocrity since Tom Brady left the organization following the 2019 season.

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The Patriots won six Super Bowl titles in Brady’s 20-year New England tenure. They reached the Super Bowl nine times, cementing themselves as one of the greatest dynasties in professional sports history.

But Bill Belichick and company have missed the playoffs in two of the three seasons since Brady’s departure, posting an underwhelming 25-25 regular-season record in that stretch.

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“I would love to see them go to the Super Bowl again,” White said. “But I say it all the time: Over the last 20 years, the Patriots have given us so much joy and happiness, you know what I mean? We can take a little rebuilding time if we need to. But shame on you, Jon Anik.”

The Patriots kick off their season Sept. 10 against the reigning NFC champion Philadelphia Eagles. We’re willing to bet White will be paying attention with cautious optimism.

Featured image via Mark J. Rebilas/USA TODAY Sports Images