When the MMA organization "Affliction" recently collapsed, fight fans were oozing out the mouth at the possibility of the UFC signing arguably the greatest fighter in the history of the sport, Fedor Emelianenko.
Whether you love or hate the UFC (and Dana White), there is no denying that the company has the best collection of fighters and would have offered "The Last Emperor" the best fights possible going in to the latter part of his career.
Instead, Strikeforce was able to net the Russian super star by caving into M-1’s demands of co-promotion.
Now the UFC had reportedly offered Emelianenko a very lucrative contract in the vicinity of $5 million a fight, while also agreeing to give M-1 a share of the profits, but no co-promotion.
There are only three possible explanations I can think of for Fedor’s displeasing move:
1) Emelianenko has an irrational fear of money.
2) He’s ducking Lesnar and wants to end his career by beating relatively lesser opponents (Strikeforce’s top attractions are Alistair Overeem, Fabricio Werdum, and Brett Rogers).
3) Fedor’s manager, Vadim Finkelchtein, is secretly a mob boss who has threatened to break Fedor’s legs if he ever leaves M-1.
I am definitely a fan of MMA, but in no way, shape or form would I call myself an expert on the sport. Despite that, even I can see how bad of a move this was for MMA as a whole.
Fedor Emelianenko had a chance to make an insane amount of money, become permanently cemented as an International super star and end his career with exciting, crowd-pleasing fights against the likes of Brock Lesnar, Randy Couture, Gabriel Gonzaga, Mirko Cro Crop (probably would have finished him this time around), and others.
C’mon Fedor, why are you clowning yourself, man?