The toxic ghost of Jon Gruden still haunts the NFL in the most nefarious ways, and now he can count the city of Las Vegas as another potential nemesis. The UFC 278 alternate commentary channel, known as the Gronkcast, featured former NFL tight end Rob Gronkowski and his family.
UFC President Dana White claims he was working on getting Tom Brady and Rob Gronkowski to the Las Vegas #Raiders in 2020, but Jon Gruden decided in the last minute that he didn’t want to do it.
Gronk: “That’s exactly what’s happened.”pic.twitter.com/clcIFMS0xV
— Ari Meirov (@MySportsUpdate) August 21, 2022
During “UFC 278 With The Gronks,” Gronkowski had White on a split screen and stated that he gave Tom Brady a recruiting pitch when he was a free agent, then asked “what went wrong” with Brady potentially signing with the Raiders.
“Do I really tell this story right now, Rob? Do you want me to tell this story?” White asked.
Gronkowski loved it and egged on the reluctant promoter, dropping another previously unknown gem.
“You never know, I could have been in Vegas with you the last three years man, what the heck?” Gronk said.
“You would have been!” White replied to a compliant Gronk.
“I would have been.”
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 21, 2022
Then White went on to describe perhaps the most crushing news to Raiders fans everywhere, that they lost out on a QB-TE duo that achieved four championships together.
“I worked to put that deal together for Brady and Gronk to come to the Raiders,” White said. “It was almost a done deal. At the last minute Gruden blew the deal up and said that he didn’t want them.
“All hell broke loose man, it was crazy. Brady was already looking at houses and it wasn’t being said yet that Gronk was coming. So Las Vegas would have had Brady and Gronk the year the Bucs won the Super Bowl except Gruden blew the deal up. There’s so much story that goes along with this behind the scenes. … I was never going to tell that story until Gronk just said it.”
To add gasoline to the now smoldering Raiders fan fire, Gronkowski reiterated that White’s story is “exactly what happened.”
Last year, during an interview on LeBron James’ “The Shop,” Brady revealed that a team had pulled out on a deal for him at the last minute to stick with their QB.
“One of the teams, they weren’t interested at the very end. I was thinking, ‘You’re sticking with that motherf–ker?’”@TomBrady kept receipts on his free agency 🤐 @brgridiron#TheShopHBO premieres Friday at 9:30pm on @hbomax pic.twitter.com/lDW8ywrLLP
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) June 21, 2021
“One of the teams, they weren’t interested at the very end. I was thinking, ‘You’re sticking with that motherf–ker?'” Brady said, leaving many wondering who he was talking about. Now it is pretty obvious that it was Raiders QB, Derek Carr.
At the time, Gruden and his then GM, Mike Mayock, made the athletic hiring decisions. Dana White is in no way officially connected to the NFL franchise. However, owner Mark Davis is a frequent attendee of UFC fights.
The Miami Dolphins were tampering by talking with Brady in 2019 while he was still a member of the New England Patriots. It is not far-fetched to believe White was working his deal to upgrade the sports team for Las Vegas, where the UFC is headquartered.
Gruden is one of the most loathed men in NFL history, and that just got worse for him.