UFC heavyweight Curtis Blaydes offered an honest prediction for how his fight vs. Alexander Volkov in the main event of UFC on ESPN 11 would go.
FYI if y’all were hoping to see a 25 minute stand up war you probably shouldn’t tune in to the main event cause I fully intend on ragdolling my opponent just figured I’d let y’all know ahead of time ???????
FYI if y’all were hoping to see a 25 minute stand up war you probably shouldn’t tune in to the main event cause I fully intend on ragdolling my opponent just figured I’d let y’all know ahead of time ???????— Curtis Blaydes (@RazorBlaydes265) June 19, 2020
Although he faded in the championship rounds, Blaydes won a dominating, wrestling-heavy unanimous decision, and said post-fight he wanted to wait for a title shot. That would presumably be vs. the winner of current champion Stipe Miocic vs. former champ champ Daniel Cormier, vs. Francis Ngannou. "The Predator" is the only person to beat Blaydes, and he did it twice, so he's next, then Blaydes.
However, at the post-fight press conference, White was not impressed.
“He won. He talked a lot of s*** coming in this week," said White as transcribed by Abhinav Kini for Low Kick MMA. "I don’t think he talked the s*** he talked this week to come in and perform like that, talking about rag dolling people, he’s not getting paid, yada yada, he should be getting the title shot. He gassed out at the end of the third round. He made it to the fifth and won the fight. He won.”
“First of all, he has two losses to Francis. How do you give him the title fight over Francis? But yeah, he would be considered next in line.
“With his performance tonight and his cardio? I wouldn’t wait around if I was him. I would stay active, I would stay busy. I like Curtis Blaydes. But Curtis Blaydes has the wrong attitude as far as I’m concerned. I don’t have anything against the kid at all — when you talk s*** like he talked this week, you better come in and whoop somebody’s ass when you talk *** like that. When you talk the s*** that he talked and perform like he performed tonight, you look stupid.”
Blaydes did ragdoll Volkov for much of the fight. And Blaydes didn't so much call for the next title shot and argue that he deserves it more than Ngannou, as he said he was glad there was finally movement at the top of the division, getting him closer to his title shot goal. However, Blaydes was crystal clear in the last week on where he stands about fighter compensation, and the stance taken by Jon Jones, Jorge Masvidal, Henry Cejudo, and Conor McGregor.
"I'm very proud of the sacrifices they are making and I know that they are putting their careers and paychecks in jeopardy," said Blaydes on the 'State of Combat" podcast, as transcribed by Brian Campbell for CBS Sports. "I respect what they are doing because we need big names to speak up.
"We do deserve more money. I'm not even trying to be greedy. We are on ESPN now. That is supposed to mean something. We should be able to live the lives of other professional athletes in hockey, baseball, NFL, and NBA. I'm not saying we need to make $20 million a fight but top guys like Jon Jones, Jorge, McGregor and those other top guys, they should be making a minimum of $5 million per fight. That should cause a trickle-down effect."
"I don't like seeing guys go into a war against one another where both guys are amazing and are fighting for $12,000 and $12,000. It's a little embarrassing. These are top athletes and a lot of them have to have jobs still. If you want this sport to grow, you need to provide more amenities for us as far as training. You can't have guys who are ranked who have to drive for Uber. That's embarrassing."
"I don't want to hear all those excuses, the money is there. I don't want to hear the excuses. Even if you just bumped us up to like 29% of revenue, that would be a giant raise for guys. I don't want to hear that. If you don't want to pay us, just say you don't want to give us the money. Just say that and don't make excuses like, 'I don't know where it's going to come from.' It's like, bro, don't do that. Don't disrespect our intelligence like that. We are worth more. If you don't want to pay us, just say that and we can make our own informed decisions.
"It's like you trying to pee on us and calling it rain like we're dumb. I know we get hit in the head a lot but we are not dumb."
This is the second main event in a row that Blaydes won. Although the purses have not been released for Saturday's event, it is believed that Blaydes' contract has a 5k escalator, which would mean he earned 90 and 90 on Saturday night.