(“Don’t worry about me, Josh. I’ll be telling the media how much of a fucking joke you were to begin with by this time tomorrow.”)
It is being reported by multiple sources that Josh Barnett has officially turned down a UFC contract, despite the fact that we did literally everything within our power to hype up his return. The
ungrateful son of a bitch former UFC heavyweight champion has been in negotiations with the organization to rejoin their ranks after his most recent home, Strikeforce, exited the fight game with a whimper last month.
Barnett’s manager, Leland LaBarre, seemed to suggest that show cash was not their issue with the UFC’s offer, which is pretty surprising considering the ridiculous rate Barnett was receiving over at Strikeforce. According to LaBarre, there were other, undisclosed issues between Barnett and the UFC that simply could not be worked out:
We agreed on guaranteed compensation.In fact, we never even countered. We accepted their original offer. There are some outlying issues – one in particular – that as of this point we were unable to agree on.
It is interesting that LaBarre felt comfortable making public what could very well have been a private development in contract negotiations, but would not detail what the sticking point is. Our guess: The UFC wouldn’t let Barnett go overseas on occasion to wrestle the likes of Bob Sapp. That, or they placed a special stipulation in his contract that forbid him from using a post-fight interview as a platform to quote biblical scripture or whatever the hell he was talking about at the final Strikeforce event.
Barnett’s professional record currently stands at 32-6. He has dropped only one of his ten MMA contests in the last six years — to Daniel Cormier in the finals of the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix last May. What do you think the one issue that kept Barnett from signing could be, Nation, and do you think he’s pushing his luck turning down a UFC contract at this point in his career?