In case you’ve missed the drama, Jake has accused Dana of cocaine use, and Dana has accused Jake of steroid use. According to USA Today’s MMA Junkie, Paul is thinking about retiring from boxing and fighting for the UFC if Dana agrees to his list of demands, including pay increases, revenue sharing, and long-term healthcare for UFC fighters.
Dana responded in a Twitter video on Saturday, Jan. 1, trashing both Jake and Nakisa, who was previously the UFC’s chief financial officer.
“If you’ve ever watched one of [Jake’s] fights and you see when they do the staredown, the guy that’s standing in the middle with the warlock nose and the big wart on his face, apparently that’s his manager,” Dana said. “That guy used to be an accountant for me, and let’s just say this: He no longer works for me, and I think he’s a scumbag.”
Nakisa Bidarian is a former investment banker who spent five years at UFC.
According to a UFC press release, Nakisa received a B.A. degree in financial economics from the University of Waterloo and an M.B.A. from Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. He started his career as a financial consultant at Accenture before working in investment banking for Citigroup and Morgan Stanley, his LinkedIn profile reveals.
Then, after working as senior vice president for both Mubadala Development Company and Fertitta Entertainment, Nakisa joined UFC in October 2011, and in January 2016, he became CFO of the company. “Nakisa has been a key contributor to UFC’s success throughout the last four years since he joined the organization,” then-CEO Lorenzo Fertitta said. “His diverse finance and strategy experience, coupled with the impact he has had with the organization, make him an ideal candidate for the CFO position.”
Nakisa was only CFO for less than a year, though: The UFC announced in December 2016 that he’d be leaving the company at the end of that month to build a new direct investment platform for brothers Lorenzo and Frank Fertitta III. Nakisa served as CEO of Fertitta Capital for two and a half years before founding BAVAFA Sports in July 2019 and co-founding Most Valuable Promotions in January 2021.
Dana told Jake and Nakisa to “go start [their] own business” if they think they can treat fighters better.
In his video on Monday, Dana responded to Jake’s UFC demands by suggesting that he and Nakisa should start their own company.
“If you two think that you can do it better than we do, [that] we’re doing this whole thing wrong [and] you can treat the fighters better than we do: Knock yourself out. Go start your own business,” he said. “It’s easy to do. Get the warlock on it. The warlock can get it started for you. What you and the warlock should be focused on is your business. You’re tanking.”
Dana also called Jake “too stupid” to have written the demands himself, and he said the 24-year-old “can’t sell pay-per-views” like his UFC stars.
“Nate Diaz, Conor McGregor, Mike Tyson — these are all superstars,” Dana said. “You’re not. You can’t sell pay-per-views. So you do whatever the hell you want to do. I’m ready to roll, buddy. I don’t use cocaine. Do you use steroids? Let’s do this, Jake.”