For many years, MMA fans have wondered why the UFC was never able to close a deal with M-1 Global heavyweight Fedor Emelianenko.
The Russian fighter boasted one of the most impressive win/loss records in MMA, maintaining an undefeated streak for over 10 years and was, perhaps, the most popular fighter in the world between 2006 and 2009.
While one would think this would make him a certainty to sign with UFC, the deal was never done and many placed the blame on the demands made by Emelianenko’s manager Vadim Finkelchtein. At the time, Dana White said that M-1 Global’s demands made cutting a deal impossible.
These demands allegedly included M-1’s desire to have the UFC build a stadium in Russia and to co-promote events with them. This was in an addition to paying Emelianenko a large signing bonus.
Now, years later, Finkelchtein wants to set the record straight.
“It is drivel,” Vadim told BloodyElbow.com. “The UFC doesn’t have any relation to our arena; similarly about the earnings. The UFC didn’t offer a specific deal to us.
“Fedor talked about that, hundreds of times. They beat about the bush. There was nothing but talk. We had great offers from Affliction and Strikeforce, so we worked with them.”
Tags: Fedor Emelianenko, Mixed Martial Arts