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.


  1. Profile photo of NoPrideinUFC


    October 18, 2013 at 1:39 pm

    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

    • Profile photo of odesahitman


      October 19, 2013 at 8:47 am


      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.

  2. Profile photo of partyboy


    October 18, 2013 at 1:40 pm

    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

  3. Profile photo of UnderdogGreatness


    October 18, 2013 at 1:45 pm

    Baby Hitler at his best.

  4. Profile photo of DeeJaySlyTee


    October 18, 2013 at 1:45 pm

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

  5. Profile photo of Brasil


    October 18, 2013 at 3:11 pm

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

  6. Profile photo of Ivy


    October 18, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    Fedor should have saved that one punch for Dana.

  7. Profile photo of HolyGrimace666


    October 18, 2013 at 10:48 pm

    bipolar syndrome

  8. Profile photo of Fluidity


    October 19, 2013 at 8:31 am

    If Fedor is a f#cking zero, what does that make me ? :-(

  9. Profile photo of Henny


    October 19, 2013 at 4:48 pm

    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.

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