Dana White: I Told Fedor He Was One Punch Away From Being Worth F****** Zero


Earlier this week, legendary former Pride FC heavyweight champion Fedor “The Last Emperor” Emelianenko came out and said the reason that he never signed with the UFC was due to Dana White’s insults towards his team, and an overall feeling that White didn’t like him.

The whole ordeal of not signing Emelianenko to fight in the Octagon is one of White’s biggest regrets, but he was simply not willing to acquiesce to the lofty demands that Emelianenko’s M-1 Global management team laid forth, which included an unheard of co-promotion deal with the UFC.

At yesterday’s UFC 166 pre-fight media scrum, White fired back at the accusations of Fedor, noting that he was indeed relieved that a deal was never reached. That sounds like quite the opposite of his biggest regret. White’s words:

“We made every big fight with every fighter since we bought this company. You don’t think we wanted to do Fedor vs. Brock Lesnar? I f****** wanted to make that fight so bad. Dude, when I tell you that we did everything – someday I’ll tell you the story of how much we offered that f*****, too. Literally, when we got on the plane to fly back, we were like, ‘Thank f****** God they turned that offer down.’”

Much has been made of the White’s decided effort to get Emelianenko signed, but ultimately, Fedor’s team just wasn’t comfortable with the offer the UFC put forth; regardless of how big it was. It’s unfortunate that no one got to see just how “The Last Emperor” fared in the Octagon.

White detailed that his business partner, UFC owner Lorenzo Fertitta, also got involved in the contract talks and was met with unreasonable demands:

“We had to build a f****** stadium in Russia, and we had to do all this stupid s***, stuff that no normal f****** human being would do. And now they lay in bed every night and regret not doing that deal. I explained this to Fedor. We’re talking Dallas, Texas Stadium. We’re laying this massive f****** offer on the table. Who knows? Maybe Fedor knocks out Brock, because we saw Brock against guys that hit hard. And that’s probably what [Fedor and manager Vadim Finkelstein] look at now, like, ‘Goddamn.’ I said, ‘You’re one punch away from being worth f****** zero.’”

Emelianenko never ended up being worth zero, but his value took a huge hit when Fabricio Werdum submitted him inside the Strikeforce cage in 2010. Then he got throttled by Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva, and then knocked out by Dan Henderson, and the rest is history. The deal that White once offered was long gone, and all that’s left is speculation as to what could have been.

It’s likely that the truth is somewhere in between all of this convoluted back-and-forth, but it’s interesting for White to be ‘glad’ that he wasn’t able to sign the fighter that became his biggest regret. Now Emelianenko is retired, and has no desire to prove anything else in MMA.

The only true losers in this whole ordeal are the fans.

  • Dana white your a great business and a spectacular promotor but your head weighs more than the rest of your body, have some respect for the people who made the sport what it is today and brought attention to mma

    • NoPride,

      Are you telling Dana to have respect for himself and partners. They are the people who made the sport what it is today.

      It's best you do your homework prior to making such silly uninformed comments.

      Oh, and before you speak about those who went before such as Pride, their business model didn't work, it could have all died there. The sport is what it is today because of savvy businessmen who knew how to build a brand, develop and run an operationally efficient and effective team, do deals and draw fans…

      You sir are living proof that a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

      • No Pride and Odesa – you're both right. They are both builders of the sport and they didn't get along – Or more accurately M1 and Dana didn't get along. It doesn't surprise me that two competitors (M1 and UFC) couldn't work together. They are in business to out promote the other guy.

        • There there truth is laid out. One guy fought for the sport literally and the other metaphorically.

        • Fair point Michael – thanks

      • Of course everyone knows what the fertitta brothers did for the sport i was just simply saying dana white has no respect for great fighters like fedor who are basically part of the roots of mma, fighters that you are watching every day began mma looking up to these fighters your head seems to be as big as danas

        • NoPride

          Thanks for the clarificaiton, that's a really good point.

  • It was pretty clear that m-1 never wanted fedor in the octagon. It had to be clear from day one that the ufc were never gonna go for the co-promotion bs that they were after, dana always said they'd never do that, and yet m-1 kept insisting on it and then blamed dana for it not happening.
    They might have saw that age was catching up on him and hoped that hed go unbeaten until retirement in the smaller orgs. If that had happened I reckon we'd still be having Reem/ Brock/ Fedor debates on these threads haha but obviously Werdum put a stop to that

    • Fedor was a co-owner of M-1 hence their vested interest. His move to the UFC would have hurt M-1. But does anyone know if M-1 is even still in business?

      • m-1 still has a current contract with showtime for 2 and a half more years but after strikeforce was bought out, i think the m-1 contract is just sitting filed in a filing cabinet somewhere.

  • Baby Hitler at his best.

  • Hurray Dana!! .. He probably said you were one hair away from going bald!!!

    • yep insult the bald guy in defence of the………other bald guy

  • Bald Douche is a douch but i beleive he is right about Fedor's team…..

  • Ivy

    Fedor should have saved that one punch for Dana.

    • lol Ivy, I don't think Fedor wanted to deal with murder charges.

  • bipolar syndrome

  • If Fedor is a f#cking zero, what does that make me ? 🙁

    • Fedor's potential was waning because of age. Yours is on the rise. We'll have to wait and see what you make of yourself.

  • Fedor had a great career. Beating Lesnar and Randy would have been the icing on the cake. But Cain and JDS are too young and strong for him. I think Fedor wasn't hungry in this time anymore. He was talking about retirement after every fight. He was driven by his management and that isn't the best motivation. I'm a MMA-Fan for a long time now and it was a pleasure to watch Fedor fight. God bless him. He is, in my opinion, at least the greatest HW I have ever seen.