This past week the UFC held yet another round of contract discussions with highly coveted MMA free agent Fedor Emelianenko in hopes of hammering out a deal to bring him to the UFC. Initial reports were mixed but in a recent interview with CBS White discussed the true status of the drawn out talks. Here’s an excerpt from the report:
UFC president Dana White said that his recent meeting with representatives of Pride heavyweight champion Fedor Emelianenko did not bring UFC any closer to signing the superstar free agent.
When asked how the Emelianenko meeting went, White said “it didn’t go well,” but declined to discuss details.
“I don’t like to talk about contract negotiations with the public — but it didn’t go well,” White said. “These guys are crazy.”
The stalled contract negotiations revolve around one thing and one thing only: exclusivety. The UFC wants Fedor exclusively limiting to only fighting in the organization while he wants to be able to compete in other MMA promotions, particularly in Russia. It is very rare for the UFC to allow fighters under contract to fight elsewhere and in the rare instances they do the fighters have typically lost several bouts in the octagon and are sent to other organizations to improve. Money is not an issue that has come into play as his managers have stated repeatedly that the UFC deal is the most lucrative.
Negotiations have been in the same status for months with the UFC trying to convince Fedor to sign an exclusive contract but they have been reluctant insisting he be allowed to fight elsewhere.
I will provide more as it becomes available but unless either side has a change in their principal demands expect more of the same.