Fedor Emelianenko, The GOAT (The Greatest Of All Times)
LAS VEGAS – For UFC president Dana White, Fedor Emelianenko (33-4) is a name that just never seems to go away.Recently, the former PRIDE heavyweight champion told Sportbox.ru he was considering a potential fight in the UFC.Apparently, White didn’t get the memo. Despite recent back-to-back wins over Satoshi Ishii and Jeff Monson, Emelianenko isn’t coming to the octagon anytime soon, said the UFC boss.”Not even a little bit,” White told told MMAjunkie.com(www.mmajunkie.com) when asked if Emelianenko was at least on his radar.Emelianenko was once considered the greatest heavyweight fighter in the sport. However, he’s currently on the rebound after a three-fight skid that ended an incredible 10-year unbeaten streak and prompted his exit from Strikeforce this past summer.
Emelianenko’s recent wins have done little to deter critics who say his time has passed. Most notable among them is White, who earlier this year said Emelianenko “sucks” during an ambush interview with celebrity gossip website TMZ.
Of course, that wasn’t always the case. In 2009, following the collapse of Affliction, White negotiated with Emelianenko and his management group, M-1 Global, for a potential blockbuster fight with then-UFC champ Brock Lesnar. At the time, White said he offered “a ton of money, everything that he wanted” in addition to allowing Emelianenko to participate in sambo tournaments when not training for a fight.
“He could go fight in sambo every [expletive] Thursday night if he wants to,” White said at the time.
However, the two sides could not come to terms, largely based on M-1 Global’s insistence on co-promoting events, and Emelianenko signed with Strikeforce, which at the time was a competing promotion.
“I put my money where my mouth was and laid everything out and tried to make this thing happen, and they’re coming up with unrealistic [expletive],” White said at the time.
Emelianenko then suffered three-straight losses, much to White’s delight. Now that the Russian heavyweight has put two more check marks in the win column, White said his feelings haven’t changed.
“That was a guy who was made an incredible offer, and they laughed at it,” White said. “They aren’t laughing now.”