It appears that Josh Barnett isn't in the UFC right now because Zuffa was unwilling to give him something that another big free agent was given in his contract offer. Barnett, who was set to face off with former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos if he did sign, explained to MMA Junkie why he turned down the UFC's contract offer:
"I was excited to fight JR. I thought he was a very favorable matchup for me, but Zuffa was unwilling to give me something that they gave Eddie Alvarez. No disrespect to Eddie, but I felt it was fair to give it to me as well."
He wouldn't elaborate on what that clause was. Due to the legal battle between Bellator and the UFC over Eddie's services, his actual contract offer from the UFC became public record. The UFC was offering a $250,000 signing bonus, an immediate title shot, and PPV points, alone with a few other unique clauses.
Barnett's manager previously said that guaranteed ompensation wasn't an issue, so you'd guess that the signing bonus isn't what Barnett's holding out for. The immediate title shot doesn't seem very logical either considering he lost to Daniel Cormier in the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix Finals. So is it the PPV points? Or some other issue? We might never find out, and it's a shame because I really wanted to see Barnett in the UFC.