Loretta Hunt has a piece up on the potential Randy Couture vs. Fedor Emelianenko fight that we have all been waiting for for so long now. Vadim Finkelstein again makes it clear that he is willing to negotiate and do this fight in the UFC, but the devil is in the details:
"We, M-1, we're not in any way against working with the UFC. We've spoken to them before about the possibility of working together. Anything's possible," said Finkelstein.
Finkelstein proposed that an agreement could be reached if UFC President Dana White was "willing to meet halfway."
If round two of negotiations with Zuffa were to take place shortly, Finkelstein said he might be open to a two-fight deal with Couture the first opponent on the ledger. However, Finkelstein seemed less than assured that the UFC would budge from the original offer they made nearly eleven months ago.
A two-fight deal is really a nonstarter, but then again I think that is partially a negotiation ploy to start there. Dana cannot allow Fedor to come in, destroy Couture and Lesnar, and then leave.
Someone within the industry made the argument the other day to me that a one fight deal makes sense for the UFC. Here is the argument: "Even if Fedor wins, there is no major promotion that can take advantage of it in a meaningful way. Affliction will have serious money issues going forward, and even if they run moderately successful shows every few months one day, that is no threat to the UFC. Pro Elite cannot offer anywhere near what Zuffa can, and who knows that their future is at this point? By doing the fight, the UFC would make millions in revenue on Pay Per View, they would deny any other promotion the chance to put the biggest fight ever on, and they could even get lucky and kill Fedor's myth if Randy beats him."
I am very skeptical of this argument, though I concede that allowing another promotion to do Randy-Fedor would be a huge loss for the UFC.