Pro boxer James Toney continues to make overtures for a shot in the UFC.
The 41-year-old former IBF middleweight and super middleweight champion attended UFC 108 on Saturday in Las Vegas, the second live event he’s been to in three weeks. Toney also attended UFC 107 on Dec. 12 in Memphis, Tenn.
UFC President Dana White was asked about Toney’s presence at Saturday’s post-fight press conference.
“He’s stalking me, man,” joked White. “I don’t know. He and I are gonna sit down and talk this evening. He looks good though.”
White told reporters later that he was mulling over the pros and cons of promoting a pro boxer.
“(Boxer) Zab (Judah’s) like, ‘Man, you need to teach these guys how to box. You need to teach them this, that, and everything,’ but these guys don’t understand,” said White. “You don’t balance your weight the same way you balance your weight in boxing. You’ll get that front leg kicked off into the eighth row somewhere if you distribute your weight the same way they do in boxing. There’s an education process there for these guys that I learned the f---ing hard way. I went in and got choked out and kicked in the leg and all the stuff that happened to me when I started.”
White said he was unsure if promoting a pro boxer would translate well into pay-per-view buys. White was also aware of the potential backlash that could come with the move.
“I got blasted this week? Let me make this fight. Then I’ll get blasted from her to-- I’m the first guy out there going, ‘This is a f---ing freak show. Who would put on a fight like that?’” said White. “But I gotta tell you this. I’ve always wanted to see a guy--(Toney’s) a guy I actually respect. He’s tough as nails. He’s mean. He’s nasty. (But) he better get in shape if he wants to come in here and do this stuff.”
Toney’s interest in the UFC has been ongoing. In October 2006, former UFC champion Randy Couture said he was called by the UFC with a potential bout against the pro boxer that never came to fruition.