T Nation

Theory on Why UFC Will Not Co-Promote to Get Fedor


With the break down of the negotiations this week, a lot of people are wondering "WTF!?!".

For those of you who do not know, The UFC offered Fedor a 6 fight deal, for 5 million dollars a fight (30 million total). WAY more then any UFC fighter has ever made, period. They said he can wear all his M-1 Global stuff he wants, and that M-1 Global gets a PPV cut for having Fedor on the show.

UFC said Fedor's first fight would be against Brock Lesnar for the title..

Which is why most people are wondering why this biggest offer ever is being turned down. Fedor fought Tim Sylvia, and Andre Arlovski. Tim Sylvia is a represenative of how shitty the heavyweight division truly is, and Arlovski would have been more interesting a few years ago when he was a title contender. Other then those two guys Fedor hasn't fought a top guy in his division since Mark Hunt or Mirko Filopovic fast approaching 4-5 years ago.

M-1 Global's main concern is that Fedor will be bound to a UFC contract, which makes NO F**KING SENSE, because why the hell would Fedor really need to fight outside of the UFC at this point. Josh Barnett is not allowed to fight, Mir, Lesnar, Carwin, Couture, Nogueira, are in UFC, any heavyweight with half a brain wants to fight where the fans are, and the money is.

M-1 Global survives solely on co-promoting with organizations, and their only bargaining chip is Fedor Emelieneko, they are putting on their first non-co-promoted PPV August 28th. With top light heavyweight contender "Don Frye" starring the show. Don Frye kicks ass, everyone loves his moustache, but come on. He's not in the top 20 LHW's.

My theory on why the UFC will not allow Fedor to leave UFC is because of a syndrome...Bret Hart syndrome.

Well anyway, for anyone who's a pro-wrestling geek knows (if you have no idea bare with me), Bret Hart was WWF champion, and was leaving for WCW for more money. However he refused to understand that wrestling is fake, and they demanded that he lose his championship belt before he goes to WCW so he doesn't show up on their ratings opponents show as the WWF champion which would be disasterous. All the fake crap aside, thats a real problem for the WWF if your nut job champion refuses to lose his belt in his hometown.

If Fedor is not completely bound to UFC, he could beat Brock Lesnar, and go fight in M-1 Global, Elite XC, Strikeforce, whatever MMA fight promotion he pleases as the UFC champion. Which would be of course disasterous.

This "co-promotion" thing is bullshit, they are giving them a piss load of money, and letting them plaster banners all over the show. They act like the UFC is being unreasonable by forcing him to stay for 6 fights. Its like sorry for giving you more money then you can shake a stick at, giving you the largest fan base, and giving you top contenders.

I also consider just how devalued Fedor will be once Brock Lesnar dominates him for 3 rounds and TKO's him. Perhaps there is more money in the long run for M-1 Global if they keep giving Fedor guys they know he can beat. These shady ass M-1 promoters are more like Don Kings then the MMA enthusiasts they claim to be. I just don't get these M-1 tards, I was just watching and interview with the creepy Finklestein guy who makes all the decisions for Fedor apparently and they truly act like they don't need the UFC. NEWSFLASH FINKLESTEIN! No one gives a shit about Fedor vs Barnett when it lands between GSP vs Thiago Alves, Lesnar vs. Mir and Anderson Silva vs Griffin, Penn vs Florian.

Fedor vs Brock is the real life Rocky 4, and America doesn't lose, we'll free the shit out of your country!


Maybe Fedor doesn't like Dana White? Dana did call him a shit fighter a while back.


I was thinking about Dana saying after Anderson Silva right, "Dont talk to me about F*cking fedor! He's in a buffet in Russia somewhere!"

But for 30 million dollars, Dana White can call me anything he wants.


Maybe Fedor is like 'Fuck you stupid American pig-dog'(in my russian accent) I think Fedor should cut to 205 and dominate the light heavyweight division... and maybe kill Anderson Silva in a fight if he goes up to LHW and Fedor was there...

Russian Terminator v. Brazilian Terminator


lol your very bias OP.
It's hard to believe what is true and not.
Supposidely that whole 30 million dollar contract is BOGUS anyway..they announced that there was no contract for 30 million dollars they had a good meeting but no ACTUAL contract was made for 30 million dollars and he turned it down.

I doubt they would even pay Fedor 5 million dollars per fight anyway..Seriosuly UFC doesn't DO massive payouts like that. They give top guys half a mil. All ufc fighters will shit themselves if Dana gave Fedor 5 million..If Brock and Fedor fought..Fedor loses and gets 5 million..And brock gets 500,000 again? Okay not that lets even say a million. Not happening.

And you obviosuly have a deep love for Brock Lesnar seeing the picture and saying how he is going to dominate Fedor for 3 rounds and TKO him. Well a title fight would be 5 rounds...lol
Anyways and this

"Fedor vs Brock is the real life Rocky 4, and America doesn't lose, we'll free the shit out of your country"

grow up.


Look at all the fighters that have had problems with the UFC, this includes (but is not limited to):

AKA - over likeness rights fo life

BJ Penn - wanted to be able to fight. Period. UFC took forever setting up his next fight and his next contract (under the stipulation that you remain bounded by contract if you are champion) so he took a fight against a recognized top ten opponent

Tito Ortiz - God knows what his reason was. Mostly arguments with Dana

Randy Couture - Dana White

Brandon Vera - sat out almost a year while the UFC made him eat shit

Arlovski - see above

None of those guys said it was strictly the money that prevented them from fighting. Money is nice, Fedor has lots. He probably requires more than strictly monetary compensation and the greatest fighter we've ever seen does not have to bend over for a promoter that presents himself as a fake ass fighter. BLAF.


i'll tell ya one thing: if fedor fought lesnar...I would actually get payperview to watch it.


I know Dana White and Jon Fitch had some tangle together over rights with UFC video game and such...how his family wouldn't get any compensation if something happened to Jon Fitch and Dana could still use Jon Fitch to sell things and make money etc. goes somethin like that.


I think Randy's problem was more money than just Dana.

I could see Fedor getting paid twice what Lesnar is making because Fedor is Fedor. He has a legacy. He has history. Lesnar has the belt, but is still very green and unproven. Randy was the Godfather of the HWs (and LHWs). Pay him what he deserves instead of letting him sit on the shelf for a year then get his butt handled by Lesnar.

Tito is just a prick. A prick banging a porn star, but a prick nontheless.


there you go again. It is entirely about $. I guess the most lucrative contract in the UFC is "bending over". Your hatred for the UFC is just plain comical.

I want to do sambo....fine. What other fighters are allowed to compete in other combat sports in the UFC?

i want to wear a competing promotions logo on fight night....fine. Not even the cash cow lesnar can wear an Affliction shirt.

I want you make M1 a full promotional partner.....no dice. There you have it. The evil UFC has refused to make a company that can provide zero promotional assistance a full promotional partner. Greedy bastards.

Why is this so god forsakely hard for you to admit? The UFC knows this. Strikeforce knows this. Alexander knows this. M1 has admitted this.


Title fights are 5 rounds, and Brock would beat him in the 3rd in my humble opinion. At the time I made the thread the "internet news" said 5 mil a fight, now m-1 says it was 2 mil a fight, which is still more then anyone. And the Rocky 4 thing was a joke, and obviously I'm biased towards Lesnar.


"Yes, co-promotion means a 50/50 investment by M-1 and the UFC. You sit down with the hard numbers. What's the fight purses? What's the venue? What's the advertising budget? Travel, food, throw it all in a pot, split it down the middle, and at the end of the event if the ink is black and there's a profit, split the profit, and if the ink is red, then just split the loss... We're not asking for more than what's fair. We're just asking for it to be a level playing field. We have the best fighter in the world. The fans want to see it... If they want to say they got the top fighter in the world, prove it. We're willing to prove it. Fedor's willing to fight anybody anytime. And he is, he's willing to fight anybody [but] on equal terms. We're not asking for more. We won't settle for less - we're not asking for more though. Fedor will fight anybody on equal terms. So if Dana believes he has the best fighters in the world then shut up or put up."

-USA M-1 Vice President Jerry Millen sheds light on his companies desires regarding co-promotion with the UFC.

There you have it. They want a 50/50 split with the UFC for any card Fedor is on. Can we quit with all the other nonsense now?


Is this really a discussion? Whatever you think about the UFC, they are both good businessmen and lucky. They have the largest and best MMA promotion in the world. All this has been done without Fedor and will continue without Fedor.

Please remember that Pride's downfall was a co-promotion with the Yakuza. The UFC could not even figure out their finances once they purchased them. Instead, they spent $20 Million ( I think that this was the number) for a Pride Tape Library and a promotion that they could not resuscitate. Why the hell would you get in bed with Russians who are offering nothing other than one fighter?

A rule of thumb is that if someone has to tell you that they are successful, powerful or really well managed, they are not. M-1 has spent a ton of time telling us all these things. They are managers for Fedor. Nothing more. M-1 has nothing to offer the UFC and only a check to receive. I can see no reason that the UFC would consider this proposal. It is bad business.

And to the point of how much a fighter gets paid, we are only told certain parts of the contract with athletic commissions require. They are revenue sharing agreements on PPV, salaries and other non-commission revenue opportunities that always come into play.


There you go again misrepresenting my position.

Less than 5 years ago, fans and Dana were clamoring for a UFC-Pride co promotion, or at least the lending of fighters between orgs. This is when Pride was number one. Dana would constantly say it was all about the fans, givi8ng thme the best fights, etc etc Now, we have the recognize number 1 fighter in teh world, locked into a contract with anotehr org, and they're supposed to give him up to the UFC.

I didn't say the UFC should co-promote. They shouldn't, doesn't make business sense. But if they're doing everything possible to make the Lesnar-Fedor fight happen, then it seems like they would be ammenable to a 1 fight deal where Fedor could come in, slap Lesnar around like he's a ho that owes her pimp money, and saunter out with no doubts left.


If both orgs are providing equal value and product, copromotion makes perfect sense.

This would be just as stupid as co-promotion. It needs to be at least a break even proposition. They would have to make as much off of Fedor as they would lose by him beating whoever happens to be the champion at the time. They have considerable amounts of money in building up their brand and fighters. I doubt they could make enough off of one Fedor fight to cover the cost of potential damage to that brand.




I wanted to see Fedor in the UFC so it is a bit disapointing.

I have been thinking about this situation and I have a few thought:

In the court of public opinion Fedor has taken a hit. Regardless of what the truth may be the perception is that Fedor made the wrong choice.

Fedor's walk away point in negotiations is co-promotion. This is the UFC's walk away point as well.

I think the UFC made a sincere effort. But I think they knew co-promotion would be the sticking point. That is why they made concessions in other areas. The problem is whether those concessions would be enough to get Fedor to relent on co-promotion. Public perception seems to say it should have been, so the UFC has this on their side. My opinion is that they should/(maybe they were) prepared for the chance that it would not have been enough. So far I do not know what their plan was for this scenario, beyond walking away.

Is it co-promotion or is it half the profits for cards on which Fedor fights? Would they be satisfied with half the profits? Are they the same thing or are they different?(in their view)

In regards to the point that all these other fighters have accepeted deals in the UFC and what makes Fedor different. I think that since the UFC does not have a union or collective bargaining that point is silly. Negotioations are a on a one on one basis. If there was a union then yes I think Fedor would be unreasonable in that if they diverged from the union's postion in negotiations.

The above point brings up another point. In sports with unions the players do get a percentage of revenue, a rather high percentage(like half) if I am not mistaken. I think there are deals on merchandising as well. In this context Fedor's demands do not seem so ridiculous.

Up until now the UFC's business depends on ppv. If they get a television deal and the sport were to become mainstream I think first that would change the economics and their current way of dealing with fighters would be unsustainable, untenable, financially as well as ethically.

I think the UFC has done a good job of framing the argument to their benefit. They also benefit from people's natural reaction to things that challenge the status quo. Since the majority of fighters have accepted the UFC's terms that is in itself a validation of the UFC's terms being good. Not accepting those terms must mean you are being unreasonable. Though I think you can look at it from the angle that the UFC can use their position to dictate the terms and set the market. Then you are on your own to find a better deal. They know you probably will not find a better deal, and they know the majority of fighters do not have the leverage to get a better deal, and there are not many competitors to disrupt the market. Does this mean that the UFC gives a good deal? Or does it just seem that way since they dictate the terms of the market? I think this is something to think about.


At the time they were not offering equal value. Pride enjoyed a much higher standing and profit margin than the UFC at the time. Dana basically needed Pride to legitimate his fighters.


please. youre not even trying now. Yeah Pride was in great financial standing.


Sometimes people forget, UFC is a business, and Dana White is a businessman first, fight fan second. He is going to do what makes the most money, and won't say it, but doesn't give a fuck what we think if the price isn't right.

The same people who are bitching about this are the ones who bitched when CroCop left to play out his career against second rate fighters, in front of his fans from Pride, in Dream or whatever he's in.

It's a fucking business.