KSI was shocked when Dillon Danis pulled out of their boxing match.
KSI had been set to face Danis at the Misfits Boxing Enterprise’s main event on Saturday, but Danis pulled out this week. Although Danis’ departure may have not been surprising to the MMA world, KSI stated that he did not see it coming.
“We probably had a bit too much faith in him trying to show up, and he didn’t even show up in the end,” KSI told Ariel Helwani on The MMA Hour. “Yeah, that was bad on us, but it is what it is.”
In defense of KSI, there were early signs that Danis would show up for this bout. A few weeks ago, the polarizing erstwhile MMA fighter went on The MMA Hour and aggressively hyped up the fight, saying he was making “a bag” and adding he would absolutely show up to the fight.
This is why KSI was pretty certain Danis would not bail.
” I thought that he would show up. 100 percent,” KSI said. “Him being there made me go, OK, he’s actually serious. He’s going on your show, he wants to actually fight, he looks like he’s somewhat prepared. Maybe he’s rambling on here or there, but he looked like he was serious. So, I thought, “alright, cool,” and based on what my manager has been saying to me and what other people have told me, it seems he is actually down.
” I heard whispers via Twitter and some comments like “He won’t show up.” He’s not going to fight.’ But I was like, ‘No, man.’ Especially for the amount of money he was going to be making. He won’t withdraw. Especially with everything he said, saying I’m not a real fighter, I’m an idiot, I’m stupid, this and that, I can’t box, he’s going to knock me out. He can’t come out with that much smoke, and pull out. And then he did.”
While KSI was shocked by Danis’ departure, it is not the first. Though “El Jefe” has excelled at staying in the headlines, he has struggled to get in the cage in recent years with his last actual fight coming in 2019. He also bailed on the Misfits Boxing event’s pre-fight press conference, which KSI acknowledged could portend bad things for the Bellator contractee’s attendance.
Still, the YouTube sensation thought this time would be different, explaining the thought process that led to him fighting Danis in the first place.
“I was going to be fighting [Tyron] Woodley, and Logan Paul was going to be fighting Dillon Danis, and then Logan got injured, the budget got shorter from DAZN, and then Tyron Woodley was just having a little back-and-forth with the rehydration clause and the weight, and we were just like, ‘We’ve got Danis here, who’s free, and he’s hungry,'” KSI explained. “He’s been telling us that he wants to fight. … So I was like, alright. Let’s go. He wants it, he’s hungry for it, and he’s going to be entertaining. I know between Danis and Tyron Woodley, I’m going to get more entertainment from Danis, because he’s just wild and weird and stupid. He gravitates eyes toward him. It’s just going to make it a bigger spectacle. Get the MMA world to watch it. It was just a smart play, and I knew I would knock him out anyway, but I think it would have been a great showcase of me to be like, ‘OK, this is what I can do.’ But yeah, we all know what the story is.”
KSI continued to say that Danis made noises about a rehydration provision that was included in the contract, aside from his previously stated lack of preparation. Really, though, he puts Danis’ withdrawal down to one simple fact: fear.
“I think he was scared,” KSI said. “I think he probably saw videos of how I was training and how prepared I was, and how serious I was taking this. “I have always taken every boxing match seriously since the Logan fight.
” I will fight like Mike Tyson or the greatest fighter in the world, since I was beaten by Joe Weller so many years ago. It was like I was sick. I’m awesome. I don’t even need to train. I trained super hard and I got to this level, and I was able to beat Joe Weller. Alright, cool. Let me fight Logan Paul, who hasn’t done any boxing. It doesn’t take as much effort to train. It should not be difficult. Jab just beat me and is slapping my face. And I’m there like, ‘Oh, I’m actually not as sick as I thought I was.’ Then I had to dig deep, get the dog in me to scrape a draw. Then with the second fight I put my all into it to make sure I got a win.”
For his part, Danis has yet to speak about his withdrawal but for one tweet stating “the truth will shock everyone.” Given his almost four-year layoff from any sort of combat sport, any explanation likely won’t be well-received. It certainly won’t be by KSI, who made it clear he has no intention of ever offering Danis a fight again.
” No – no. “It’s done. F*** him. F*** Dillon. He should be forgotten by everyone and disappear into insignificance. No, no, no. Mams [Taylor, KSI’s manager] has been told literally that I do not want to be near the house. I don’t care. With me, I don’t care about money. I’ve got money. I don’t do this for money. You can’t disrespect me this way. I will just get rid of you. I don’t care.”
With Danis out, KSI now faces pro-gamer FaZe Temperrr on Jan. 14 at Wembley Arena in London.