Past sending a message to other agents that it’s “my way or the highway”, there’s more to the AKA hitjob than being sick of a specific agent. Many of us have been saying that lifetime videogame rights are a pretty strange straw to break the camel’s back. But it looks like that straw might actually be an anvil in the form of THQ being pissed off that the UFC misrepresented the situation to them on fighter rights:
It appears that the UFC may have gotten itself into a bit of a predicament as sources indicate that THQ, who is producing promotion’s upcoming video game release “UFC Undisputed 2009,” operated under the auspices that they had exclusive rights to the likenesses of all fighters on the UFC roster. Five Ounces of Pain has been informed that THQ was none too pleased upon learning that rival Electronic Arts has commenced work on an MMA game of its own and that plans are in motion to involve a great deal of recognizable fighters. The sources have indicated that in addition to names such as Randy Couture, Tito Ortiz, and Frank Shamrock that known UFC fighters could potentially be featured as well.
The fact that THQ had been promised exclusive access to the likeness of the entire UFC roster when the UFC wasn’t in a position to make such an assurance is believed to be a reason why the promotion has acted in haste in regards to demanding its fighters sign over their likenesses for “Undisputed.”
You’ve seen how Dana White still marks out hardcore to ESPN and I don’t doubt that they’re the same way with THQ. They don’t want to look foolish in the eyes of the gaming industry, and a major fuckup like missing a bunch of fighters could result in THQ being less willing to continue making a yearly video game with them. Because hey, if the UFC isn’t able to lock down the new guys coming in every year, then how can THQ compete against EA’s offering?
Dana White might be glib about Fitch, Koscheck, and Velasquez moving any game units. But Fitch was just up for a title shot and who knows where Koscheck and Velasquez would have been over the course of the next year? Imagine how stupid everyone involved in the game would look if their video game didn’t feature one of the guys who became UFC champion.
So yeah … you can see why Dana White is spazzing out. Is he handling things correctly? No. But if you were wondering why he’s acting like he just found out DeWayne Zinkin put his dick in Dana’s mouth while Dana was sleeping, there you go.