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Dana White reveals shocking Howie Mandel podcast walkout was planned

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Dana White | Photo by Cooper Neill/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images

Dana White isn’t an actor but sometimes he plays one on TV ... or at least on podcasts.

Back in February, in the days leading up to UFC 298, the UFC CEO was going through a typical pre-fight “car wash,” where he’ll make appearances on a slew of podcasts and radio shows to promote an event. In doing so, White made headlines by joining comedian Howie Mandel on his podcast before proclaiming seconds into the interview, “I am so f*cking tired of doing podcasts.” White then removed his headphones and walked out of the studio.

Mandel and his other guests sat there in stunned silence for a few moments as White exited. Now, months later, White revealed that the whole thing was actually a setup that he did as a favor for Mandel after meeting him that same day.

“So what happened was I did the Sage Steele podcast when she called me Joe Rogan,” White said during an appearance on the Flagrant podcast. “First of all, Sage Steele and I are good friends, I love Sage. She asked me to be her first guest on the podcast, so I go out there. Now, the studio is owned by Howie Mandel where these podcasts take place. She was signed to Bill Maher’s podcast company and they’re all done there in Howie Mandel’s studio. So we get done with the podcast and Howie Mandel walks in and he’s like, ‘100 podcasts a week happen here, I’ve never watched any of them. I watched the whole podcast, love who you are, what you stand for,’ and all this stuff. We hit it off, started talking. Great dude.

“So he’s like, ‘Let me show you around the studio.’ He’s involved in all kinds of shit. He owns social media companies and all this other stuff. Howie Mandel owns a lot of shit that people don’t realize. Smart guy, great guy. So we’re walking through and stuff and he goes, ‘Would you do me a favor?’ I said, ‘Yeah, what’s up?’ He’s like, ‘Would you come in and get up and walk off my podcast?’ I go, ‘I would be f*cking honored to walk off your podcast because I’m so f*cking sick of doing podcasts, it’s not funny.’

“We go in there and do it, right? He’s like, ‘Take this to the grave.’ I said, ‘Done, I’ll take it to the grave.”

Obviously, White didn’t take that secret to his grave. So why is he giving up on the bit now after the setup worked so well?

As it turns out, White was out doing a separate appearance when a room full of fans began an anti-Mandel chant out of loyalty to White, and he couldn’t let that stand. So now White is telling the true story behind the podcast walkout while assuring anybody listening that Mandel did absolutely nothing wrong and deserves no blowback from his fans.

“I go do this thing with the Nelk Boys, we’re doing this ‘Monkeybomb’ f*cking tour, the whole f*cking crowd starts chanting, ‘F*ck Howie Mandel!’” White said. “I go, ‘Whoa, whoa, whoa, timeout, I can’t do this.’

“Howie Mandel’s the f*cking greatest dude ever. Sorry, Howie. It’s just when I go out and people just start f*cking shitting on the guy — and I’m sure he could give a flying f*ck — I couldn’t do it. So Howie Mandel’s f*cking awesome.”

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