Dana White threatened to quit when Disney benched Rogan for Covid controversy

UFC CEO Dana White was prepared to step away from his esteemed position to defend his close friend Joe Rogan.

In the tumultuous year of 2022, Joe Rogan found himself engulfed in a storm of criticism. A video compilation was widely circulated featuring him using the derogatory n-word on his widely followed podcast.

This video emerged just before UFC 271, which Rogan chose to miss. After the footage was released, it seemed like his career could have been in jeopardy.

Prominent podcaster Lex Fridman shed light on the moment when White took a decisive stand to safeguard Rogan’s role within the UFC, even offering his own resignation if necessary.

He said in the video: “I remember there was a moment not too long ago, maybe a year ago and I was sitting with Joe and he was in a phone call with you and Joe was getting cancelled for something and they didn’t want him commentating the fights and you on the phone offered your resignation over this.”

While ESPN isn’t overtly political, its parent company, Disney, is.t

Reflecting on the incident, White reaffirmed his unwavering support for Rogan. He also emphasized the reciprocity of loyalty within their relationship.

He said: “Anybody who is with me, has been with me, knows. When you’re with me, you’re with me. It’s a two-way street. It’s not a one-way street. I’m not one of these guys that is gonna roll over.”

“It’s like going through COVID. I wasn’t laying [off] any of these people. Some of these people have been with me for 20 years. We’re gonna lay ‘em off? Uh uh. This motherf**ker will burn, burn before I would do that to my people. It’s just never — none of that type of stuff is ever going to happen while I’m here.”

“I can’t say what’s gonna happen when I leave, but when I’m here, the people who are with me and have been with me they know exactly what’s up, and Joe knows what’s up. It’s a two-way street. Joe Rogan has been very loyal to me, and I am very loyal to Joe Rogan.”