I have watched Dana evolve as well. From a guy who was a guy who shot from the hip, to a guy who is very calculated even when he has a 'meltdown'. I respect (as does everyone) how he has been the biggest influence on the sport, and being a promoter, he always has to look at what's best for the company. I'm honestly kind of baffled at times though that the guys who have the opportunity to ask him the tough questions, let him get away with skirting around the issue or being pushed around by him. He doesn't answer a question honestly? Ask him again. Don't leave it. He skirts around an issue and tries to de-value a question, be firm and know that you are on the right path.
Dana acts the way he does because frankly, he can. He has become very very good with how he manipulates the media and press conferences with directing how the conversation goes. Almost always he hits the talking points he intended to (watching so many of his interviews over the years, now he seems to be on autopilot) whereas those who are doing the interviews are beingg pushed around or vilified by him.
Anyway, I can't personally state that I am a "fan" of GSP. I am a fan of MMA, and a fan of the business side of things (can't hate a guy for doing big things), heck its rare that I take a side other than a management/promoter side. That being said, this whole thing has rubbed me the wrong way.
But hey, its like the man says...this is the fight BUSINESS, and historically that business is filled with shady things.
Dana by and large is better than the Bob Arum's of this world and cares for the sport. Anyone can tell that. However he doesn't give 2 licks about who he needs to step on to expand it. In fairness to him, no international business cares about any 1 person to a point where it would be detrimental to the business.
Scum bag move though. I really hope to see the press hold his feet to the fire on this one and make sure he's aware that he can't just walk away from it. He has gotten really good at skirting the issue or just not being available for a week or 2 after shit blows up and then after the hoopla dies down he's back.